Homemade Pizza! (And how to use it to live frugally)

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So I spent some time last night preparing some excellent things, but the only thing that finally came to fruition was a homemade pizza that I prepared when I got home from work.

Ask me why, please.  Why, on a Monday night, did I decide to cook a homemade pizza?

I recently bought Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day from Amazon for my Kindle, and I really wanted to try it out.  The problem was, that I didn’t have a lot of the supplies I needed – like a baking stone, or a pizza peel.  So I went to the store after work to buy these things, and ended up buying ingredients for pizza too (pepperoni and cheese… I knew I could fanangle up some sort of sauce when I got home).  After all, you can’t buy a “pizza stone” without making pizza on it, can you?

So in my searches on the web, I discovered a few things: one, that I could use this in my attempt to live cheaply/frugally/sustainably, and two, that pizzas are incredibly hard to perfect.

Unfortunately, I discovered these things after the fact.  Let me tell you my recipes, and I’ll show you my end result, and we’ll go from there.

The crust was a wheat and cheese crust from “Bread Machine Bounty” – a book from 1994 which, as you guessed it, has a collection of recipes for the breadmaker.  Unfortunately, I can’t find this particular recipe online (I’m away from home right now).  But don’t worry.  The dough sucked.  I’ll share a better dough when I find one.  But I added those ingredients to the breadmaker and let it do its thing.

The pizza sauce, well, I did the following:

  • I dumped a 15 oz. can of tomato sauce into a pot.
  • I turned the stovetop onto medium ish and put the pot on it.
  • I added a teaspoon of refrigerated minced garlic (clear 4 oz. can, blue top)
  • I added “Italian Seasoning” spices to it – premade spice mix that does the job adequately.
  • I added lots of crushed black pepper.
  • I added a tiny bit of crushed red pepper.
  • I let it boil for 5 minutes.
  • I took it off the heat, let it cool, and put it in a jar to use later.

Having assembled all of this, I finally rolled the pizza dough out, let it rise (which it didn’t do, really, much at all, I think that was part of the problem), and baked it for 20 min at 375, added toppings, and went an additional 15 minutes.

Here’s what it looked like:

The dough was awful, which means that it was, generally, awful, although the cheese and pepperoni and sauce were delicious.

Anyway, the reason making your own pizza is so cool, is that even though I fucked it up, it cost me probably a whole $3 to make.  Which means that I don’t feel too bad about it being a disaster.

Also, after you get the dough recipe down (which I haven’t, yet), you can do something called parbaking, which means that you sort of… prebake the crusts, just enough to get them hard, and then you add  your toppings and freeze.  Boom.  Frozen pizza that is not $6 a box!  Buying your cheese and toppings on sale could make it even cheaper!

Or, it can free up your money so you can buy organic or locally grown ingredients.

I’d highly recommend making your own sauce, though, as I’ve never found a pizza sauce, in the store, that I’ve enjoyed.  Any suggestions?

So, to sum up, making your own pizza is a great idea, and with a little bit of time, you can even make your own frozen pizzas for later.

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