I ask myself why don’t I make more pizza? The answer is I haven’t tried before, but now I have we are hooked.
Why Don’t I Make More Pizza
I have never bothered to make pizza at home. Living in Italy we are ten minutes away from a takeaway, cheap and yummy. So why make it at home?
Saturday Lunchtime Pizza Ritual
My job is to telephone and place the order at around 12.30. Let’s just say when I telephone and ask if I can order some pizzas they just ask if we want the usual. Yes, the usual. A ‘margherita’ with artichokes and spinach for Barnet Boy. The aptly named ‘gatta’ for me, a bianca (no tomato base) with four cheeses and spinach. Occasionally I create a bit of excitement by having something different but that is our usual selection. The response is always ‘ready at 1pm’.
Barnet Boy then drives down, ten minutes into Paciano, hands over the usual money, €13.50, without being asked, picks up the pizzas and gets them home to us. Meanwhile, in winter I get lap trays etc ready for us to eat in front of the log fire. The rest of the year, I get the table ready for us to eat outside in the sunshine.
As we eat them, the dogs sit and wait, secure in the knowledge Mum will save them some pizza crust. The pizzas are huge and delicious!
And that is why I don’t make more pizza at home! I can’t begin to match what we get from our local restaurant! If we want to eat out, we can sit outside on their shady terrace or under their beautiful wisteria. Incidentally, my friend in Paciano tells me that the wisteria is fully out and how sad it is to see the empty tables underneath it!
The Lock Down Changed Our Routine
Italy imposed a strict lock down on 9 March this year and all restaurants and bars were closed.
Like everyone else, the first few weeks we were adapting to the new situation and all the rules we had to follow. The last thing we thought about was takeaway pizza.
But as time has gone on, and clearly it will still be a while before bars and restaurants open, our mind has turned to pizza. We have tried some frozen pizzas that I bought on my ‘once every three week’ visit to a supermarket for provisions. They were okay, they were nice to have but you wouldn’t lose sleep if you didn’t eat them again. The local shop in Paciano sells frozen pizzas but most are meat based (we are vegetarian) or just plain margheritas. And a plain frozen margherita leaves a lot to be desired, even if you add extra toppings.
A couple of weeks ago we decided I should attempt to make a homemade pizza. Everyone said how easy it was so I gave it a go. And what a disaster, because I followed a recipe for the pizza base that produced a thick crust, almost like cake – we really didn’t like it, we are used to thin crust pizzas!
So yesterday, being a Saturday, I tried again.
This time I made sure I was following a thin crust recipe and the pizzas turned out great! The recipe I used can be found here. We tried without cheese a) because we wanted to see what they would be like and b) because we have no cheese in the house as we don’t eat it very often! With the lockdown, popping down to the local shop to get cheese was not an option.
So, my pizza had potato (leftovers) and mushrooms, Barnet Boy had potato, mushroom and asparagus. I thought the pizzas would be too heavy with the potato but it actually worked fine.
The verdict is the base was perfect and they were very nice. My comment is that it needs a more spicy tomato sauce to give it a bit more flavor but I didn’t actually miss the cheese. BB wants cheese on his pizza next time though he loved this one, he liked the tomato sauce as it was.
I Need To Make More Pizza
Having successfully created a pizza base we can look forward to, we will now return to our Saturday lunchtime pizza ritual. Until such time as L’Oca Brusciata opens its doors for take aways again – and we will be first in the queue!
Before you go
My name is Dorothy Berry-Lound an artist and writer. You can find out more about my art and writing at https://dorothyberryloundart.com.
Thank you for reading!