See, for all of time (since Bubba and I have been together, so about 9 years), Friday night has been Pizza Night in our house and we love it for many reasons.
1. It's pizza, so obviously delicious.
2. I don't have to cook anything, so YAY for me.
3. Bubba doesn't have to do any dishes, so YAY for him.
4. There's leftovers for lunch.
6. It's good fuel for my Saturday AM run.
5. We used to have a rad pizza guy who we called Dark Halo because that's what his car's windshield said on it and he would always be bumpin' some serious gangsta rap when he showed up so we'd know to come out from the backyard to get our pizza. Plus his face was all pierced in a million places and he was nice so we loved him. The new guys aren't nearly as awesome.
I'm sure there are other reasons, but for me, #2 is enough. The fact that I don't have to think about what to make, what I need to get to make it, when I need to get home and cooking to make it happen, etc makes me extra happy on Friday afternoon after a long week of work. It's relaxing. It's easy.
Call pizza place. Tell them to bring dinner. Drink cocktails until they arrive. Eat dinner. Done.
That's the best!
Until we got bored of our pizza place. And then all the surrounding pizza places. And then Bubba started waxing nostalgic about his favorite mystical pizza experience of all times at this phantom pizza joint called Happy Joe's.
"Oh Happy Joe's," he's been saying, "you had the best sauce. Why doesn't anyone make sauce like that anymore except my wife who totally makes the sauce like you guys do but refuses to make pizza for me. *Sigh*"
And then he'd look at me with those sad Bubba eyes and begin the pining away for the reincarnated Happy Joe's pizza which he thought would make it appear before him as though by magic.
It gets a skosh dramatic around our house, you know.
While I'd normally do whatever I could do with my culinary skills to make Bubba happy, pizza was one of those no-no things. Because it meant giving up a night when I don't have to do any work for my dinner and because I've had a lot of fights with inert yeast that fails to become a fluffy pizza dough.
Replacing a night of complacent dining ease with frustration and crushing of spirits is hardly my idea of a good time. And so, we kept ordering pizza from the Not Fun pizza guys and the disappointment over said pizza became increasingly evident.
"This pizza sucks more than last week." was uttered last Friday by someone who will remain unnamed.
It was at that point that I revealed my big plan to make pizza for Sunday's dinner and, SCARY, go back into the water with the pizza dough.
Enter this month's Craft:along challenge: 5 minute pizza dough
My first note for this recipe is that you should, in no way, only allot yourself 5 minutes to make this dough. It takes a full 2 hours to rise, which makes sense to me since it contains yeast, but for some people who want pizza NOW and don't understand the unique properties of yeast, this might come as a mean surprise.
Just saying, don't get all ginned up to have a pizza in 5 minutes because it's not happening.
Second note: Unlike my beloved No-Knead Bread, this dough requires kneading, which is fine because I don't mind. It's kind of fun. If you're into that kind of thing.
Aside from that though, this is a fine pizza dough recipe that I managed to make the first time through without any catastrophic failure.
I know, I was shocked, too.
So, I made up this dough, put it in the bathroom for a couple hours because that the only room in our house where it gets over 40 degrees, and then proceeded to cross my fingers that it'd actually rise like yeasty items are said to do.
I was so sure that this was going to be a disaster that I almost didn't take a before shot.
And what do you know, it actually rose like a good kid.
I guess I should have zoomed out a little, but this dough totally doubled in size. Nice.
While it was doing the magical rising, I compiled the toppings (why do I hate this word?) for our individual pizzas since I'm more of a white pizza gal and Bubba's more of a Make it Just Like Happy Joe's Pizza guy.
That's gorgonzola, olive oil, basil and mozzarella sitting with my G&T.
To detract a little more from the ease of Pizza Night, I went on to make The Sauce from a jar of homecanned tomatoes because I am, let it be known, The Best Wife Ever. Yep.
Also, my The Best Pizza Sauce Ever. Yep. is just The Best Tomato Sauce Ever. Yep. with some added oregano and a bit more wine. Still though - The Best. Just ask Bubba.
That's The Best Pizza Sauce Ever. Yep. with some pepperoni and black olives. Just like Happy Joe's. Oh swoon.
Thankfully, he was excited enough about the coming to fruition of this Dream Pizza to put on a little show for me while I lazed in the breakfast nook, admiring my swollen feet.
This never touched the floor. True story.
After all the dramatics, our pizzas came out beautifully and we enjoyed them properly with a nice happy hour and some catching up of Family Guy on the new DVR.
Why yes, it does look good enough to be on TV! That's what I said!
And now I will go home and get some dough rising because, LO, Pizza Night has been reinvented and we're making pizza for ourselves tonight so we can properly mourn the departure of Dark Halo, as overdue as that particular gesture might be, and also so we can feel superior to the local pizza joints because of our sauce and homemade-ness.