I’ve got a dirty little pizza secret.
I don’t really care for pepperoni and… wait for it… I really only like my pizza plain.
Plain as in the word that I’ve used to describe my husband’s boring eating habits and favorable dishes. Plain as in absolutely nothing on top except for loads and loads of gooey cheese. Plain as in what my closet should probably look like at this age instead of resembling an 80s tweener.
Plain. It’s another embarrassing reveal, but it’s real.
The preference depends, however, on exactly where the pizza is coming from. If it’s delivery pizza or from a few local places that we’ve ordered from all our lives – I definitely want it plain. If it’s out at a restaurant, specifically one that specializes in pizza, I want a plain (or margherita) version but also want to try ones with an array of toppings.
And if it’s a pizza I’m making at home? I don’t want it plain at all. I want to pile on as much trash as I can.
But as a safe choice… I’ll go with plain plain plain. And finally, after five years of marriage and who knows how many ordered pizzas, my husband finally stopped asking what I wanted on my pizza. He got it.
Also: please see my pizza stone cheese fail below. I contemplated peeling off that burning cheese and eating it for about five straight minutes. I will say this is a nice save though, since I’ve managed to drop entire unbaked pizzas on my oven floor when it’s 425 degrees.
That’s really fun.
So this sort of looks like slop pile pizza. It’s so saucy (which is a whole other feat in itself for me!) and cheesy and hot that in order to serve it in perfect slices, you may as well let it get cold.
Just grab a fork… piggy time.
Nothing too crazy about the rest of this pie – just some of my mini meatballs (you could sub turkey, chicken, lamb – whatever), mozzarella and red peppers. I’m currently watching Eddie shove the last leftover slice into his face. Pretty sure that actual meatballs on pizza is a dream meal for him.
One more little secret is that these are not just any old roasted red peppers. They are those sweet and tangy sun dried peppers that I keep yapping about and ugh… I just can’t describe how incredible they are. We’ve been loving on roasted reds for years, but these are completely different. Actually, the best way that I can remotely begin to explain their taste is by their name: sweet and tangy.
We are still blowing through jar after jar of them. This past weekend I walked into the store and bought SIX. Six freaking jars. In our defense they are slightly teeny. Yesterday I had them on whole grain toast with goat cheese, and they make a KILLER addition to avocado toast. We’ve been eating them in salads, in pasta, in sandwiches and now… on pizza.
Freaking flavorful. That is all.
1 1/8 cups warm water
3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 2/3 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 batch of bite sized meatballs
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups pizza sauce
4 ounces fontina cheese, freshly grated
8 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced
1 (12-ounce) jar of roasted red peppers, or 2 homemade roasted reds
In a large bowl, combine water, yeast, honey and olive oil. Mix with a spoon, then let sit until foamy, about 10 minutes. Add in 2 cups flour and salt, stirring with a spoon until the dough comes together but is still sticky. Using your hands, form the dough into a ball and work in the additional 2/3 cup flour, kneading it on a floured surface for a few minutes. Rub the same bowl with olive oil then place the dough inside, turning to coat. Cover with a towel and place in a warm place to rise for about 1-1 1/2 hours.
While the dough is rising, make the meatballs. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Brown the meatballs on all sides, cooking until just browned, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat and let the meatballs cool a bit.
After the dough has risen, punch it down and place it back on the floured surface. Using a rolling pin or your hands, form it into your desired shape (sometimes I use baking sheets and do rectangles or free form pizzas - this specific dough will yield one pizza large enough to feed about 3-4 people) and place on a baking sheet or pizza peel. Place the towel back over the dough and let sit in the warm place for 10 minutes.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F (or if you're using a pizza stone or the skillet method, follow these directions). Spread the sauce on the dough then cover it with the fontina cheese. Add on the meatballs, sliced mozzarella and red peppers. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the cheese is bubbly.
Cute little balls right?