In celebration of Naples earning the right to label its pizza as “Traditional Specialty Guaranteed” (an EU trademark), I thought I’d give it a shot at making my own. Coincidentally, I’ve also started reading Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. In the last section I read she went to Naples and gave a delicious description of eating pizza there, and it made my mouth water. Now I set out with the best intentions – thinking oh I’ll make a healthy pizza! I even bought whole wheat pizza dough from Fresh & Easy!
But let’s face it – pizza is not the same without cheese. And cheese isn’t exactly the healthiest thing to eat (if you love it as much as I do). And if you’re gonna make a pizza, I feel like you’re really cheating yourself if you go for fat-free which doesn’t have much flavor. So I splurged on the cheese and went healthy on the dough
My brother’s instructions (he’s a chef) for preparing the dough was to first knead the dough on a surface dusted with flour. And because I wanted thin crust, he said to pick it up by my finger tips and hold the dough by the edge and kind of rotate it while thinning the edges. Somehow I completely forgot this advice and just went straight for kneading the middle with my knuckles. But I was having too much fun to worry about not eating thin crust – so I just went with it! My main concern was that it would fit perfectly in the round pizza dish I was using.
Anywho – my main objective here is to share my yummy pictures with all of you and hope it’ll inspire some of you to go out and make some pizza for yourself!
- Pizza dough from Fresh & Easy (not sure what other groceries sell it these days)
** You could always be brave and make your own! I found an Alton Brown recipe
- Pizza sauce
** I was feeling a bit lazy and didn’t have a lot of time to put into my pizza sadly, so I cheated and just bought it at Fresh & Easy since it was right next to the dough. But you could easily make a simple marinara, add oregano, let cool and blend.
- Mozzarella cheese of course!
** I added some ‘Habanero cheese’ that was on sale at the store the other day, so added it in for a little kick!
- Black olives
- Sweet onions
** At the last minute I decided to caramelize these a little with balsamic vinegar.
- Sausage meat
** Any sausage will do really or any meat you’d like. I browned it in a pan with a little bit of chili flakes before putting it on the pizza.
Cook for about 10 minutes at 450F or until the crust is to your liking!
Now I know my pizza isn’t anything close to what they have in Naples or anywhere in Italy. Even though I’ve never been, I would never have the audacity to call myself authentic! But I thought it tasted pretty yummy and I had an absolutely lovely, peaceful afternoon break (don’t worry Uncle Jack, I logged my 2-hour break!) with the house to myself, and making a mess before my Mom came home. Of course, everything tastes that much better when you’ve put love and work into it. Can’t wait to actually make my own dough! Hope you enjoy the photos!