Saturday, September 29, 2012

Palermo Pizza

For some time Mike has been wanting to me to do a pizza with a thicker crust, and this was definitely the pizza!  I could not find durum wheat or semolina flour to make sicilian pizza dough, so I once again used the breadmaker and my stand-by basic pizza dough. 
This time I patted the dough out into a 9 x 13 inch baking pan, letting it rise for about 30 minutes.  While the dough was rising, I put the pizza stone in the oven at 425 so it would be nice and hot when I was ready to bake the pizza.  I also made a sauce by heating some olive oil and then adding some chopped onions.  When the onion was soft I added chopped tomato, dried oregano, and chopped anchovies.  I didn't mind the anchovies in this recipe because they pretty much dissolve in the sauce and I wasn't even really aware they were there.
In another pan I heated some olive oil to toast some bread crumbs.  I was using the last of a container of Italian Seasoned bread crumbs;  just in case you were unaware, bread crumbs left to toast in a pan of olive oil will burn if the cook gets distracted and forgets about them!   Okay, on to "Plan B", quickly throw some hot dog buns into the blender and make more bread crumbs!  It's always a good idea to throw that last hot dog bun, hamburger buns, or any bread into the freezer to use for bread crumbs when you're in a pinch.   
I was able to toast these bread crumbs without burning them and all was ready for the dough.  When the dough had risen, I dimpled it lightly with my fingers and then topped it with half of the sauce before baking for 25 minutes.  After it had baked, I topped it with the remaining sauce, the bread crumbs, oregano and a drizzle of olive oil.  The recipe then calls for scattering Emmental over all, but Emmental is one of those cheeses that is difficult to find and pretty pricey, so I topped it with mozzarella and baked it for an additional 5 minutes to melt the cheese and give it a nice golden top. 
While we were indulging in this repast, we watched Rudy, the inspirational movie based on the real life story of Daniel E. Ruettiger (played excellently by Sean Astin).  As a child, Rudy dreams of playing football for Notre Dame.  The film shows us the tremendous hurdles in the way of reaching this dream, but through perseverance and hard work Rudy sees his dream come true.  This would be an excellent movie for the entire family, especially for children and teens that are struggling to achieve their dreams and are tempted to quit.  Even though I'm not a college football fan (which is blasphemy here in South Georgia!) I found this movie very positive and encouraging and well worth my time.

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