Thinking out loud…
Pizza. Pizza is an elemental thing. There is no real substitute. It must be pizza, well made, well baked pizza. In our neck of the woods, we have a beloved pizza place, Maltby Pizza and Pasta. It was the last restaurant we visited before the shelter in place directives went into effect—that was about 2 months ago (it seems much longer). We have missed their pizza in a big way. A BIG way.
And so begins the story of our quest for pizza, home made pizza. A further preface, we have a pizza stone in our oven—over the years it has been well used, resulting in pretty good pizza, but lately the pizza stone has been idle because Maltby Pizza became our favorite.
I have yearned for that pizza–out of reach for the time being. Then I found 4 packets of old yeast in my spice drawer….note the expiration date–2018.
So, I decided to give it a test and see if it was still active. I didn’t hold out much hope–2 years past expiration is significant. In fact, I did two separate tests using two of the four packets…
It’s ALIVE!! So I got my mise en place!! I am no slouch at mise en place!
Our hopes were riding high as they came out of the oven.
I know, it looks fab! But…the crust was disappointing, really. Just too bready! It did not have that pizza crust tang. Bummed me out!
Then, a few days later, Jim took up the gauntlet! I asked him to photo document his experiment… Then I stayed out of the kitchen.
While doing some research on line for pizza dough recipes, he found a recipe that proves overnight in the fridge, and since this yeast was a little sluggish, that seemed like a good idea. And a longer proving results in more flavor–yes it does!
Somewhere along the line toppings occurred….
Believe me, we were eagerly awaiting our first taste. It smelled sooo good!
This is the only only picture I got of Jim’s pizza before we devoured it. Jim managed to save one slice for his lunch the next day. I did not. This pizza was so satisfying! The crust was perfectly crisp and chewy, with really well developed yeasty flavor. It was the real deal. Jim’s pizza has now achieved mythic standing. He IS the pizza man!
We have one packet of yeast left.
Plus! We just found out our pizza place is on DoorDash for delivery!!
Oh yeah, I didn’t forget about the socks, but let’s take this time out to commemorate pizza. First the pizza, then the socks…