Friday Food and Drink Post: Pizza Fixin’ Edition

 

Thank heavens for Bill de Blasio. In just a few short years as New York’s Mayor, he has turned its underwater finances around, eliminated racism, sexism, religious intolerance, and violent crime, and he has spearheaded a jobs-and-revenue initiative, the crown jewel of which was bringing Amazon’s second corporate HQ “home” to the city. Along the way, he’s divested the city pension funds from fossil fuels (I suspect this is code for “taxpayer bailout coming soon”), banned single-use plastic items in the food-service industry (are condoms next–what a complicated and ‘intersexional’ discussion that would be), and pledged to “divert” 90% of waste from landfills (“to where,” I ask myself–in years’ past the answer to a question like that has too often been: to my neighboring state of West Virginia) by 2030.

Best of all, he’s even met Greta Thunberg. (I remember this specifically, because it happened on my birthday, the day that de Blasio’s Department of Education allowed hundreds of thousands of city school children to skip school and “throw a wobbly” in the streets. As we all know, “climate change” was fixed as a result of this brave action, and we are all. Much. Better. Off. as a result.)

So, now all the easy and less important stuff is under control, and now he’s got all this spare time because even the 31% or so of the population that self-identifies with a (D) after their name (no word on their pronouns) wasn’t dumb enough to support his presidential effort, de Blasio can turn his laser-like sights to a more pressing and difficult issue: New Year’s Eve pizza scalping.

You see, it seems that Domino’s in Times Square brought out whole pizzas to people who ordered them and charged them–wait for it–thirty dollars for the privilege! Normally, these pizzas cost about $15 at the store, plus whatever tip a person is willing to cough up for the hard-working staff, or to the driver if they’re delivered.

Would I ever spend $30 for a Domino’s pizza? Prolly not. But then I wouldn’t be in Times Square on New Year’s Eve, either. (Full disclosure: I have been in Times Square during the Christmas season. But not on one of “The Days.” Spending my holidays in unfamiliar places with millions of strangers, many of whom are drunk, isn’t my bag.)

But, would I expect to pay more for something like a pizza, at a festive celebration, for the convenience and the fun of it? I totally would. And, in any case, I routinely buy a slice of pizza as a treat, from one of my favorite places, when I’m in the vicinity around lunchtime. It’s $4 a slice. There are 8 slices in a pizza. So, they’re getting, what, $32 each time they sell out the whole pie, right? And that’s not even at an airport, notorious for their sky-high prices. But no-one says a peep about any of that.

Just don’t try to sell pizza at slightly under that price, in New York, on New Year’s Eve, in Times Square, otherwise, you’ll have Hizzoner on your case!

All this got me to thinking about food (doesn’t take much), and pizza, which is one of my favorite things (you know, along with “raindrops on roses, warm woolen mittens” and my current well-behaved and continent set of whiskered kittys [it was not always thus]).

When you need a “pizza fix” (and not in the pricing sense), where do you go? Do you have a favorite chain? A delightful local pizzeria? Do you make your own? What are your favorite toppings? Thin crust? Thick crust? Deep dish? Square or round? Any particular regional style?

Recipes, suggestions, or unusual recommendations (just about pizza, I mean) are welcome.

Have at it, please.

PS: Don’t tell me if I made a teensy-weensy mistake in any of my statements in this post. I’m pretty sure everything I said is accurate, but you never know. Anyway, it’s “my truth.” Show it the respect it’s due, please.

There are 52 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    She: When you need a “pizza fix” (and not in the pricing sense), where do you go? Do you have a favorite chain? A delightful local pizzeria? Do you make your own? What are your favorite toppings? Thin crust? Thick crust? Deep dish? Square or round? Any particular regional style?

    Yes.

    • #1
  2. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    But seriously, I love pizza. I even got three new stainless steel pizza pans for Christmas!

    • #2
  3. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Stad (View Comment):

    But seriously, I love pizza. I even got three new stainless steel pizza pans for Christmas!

    Hooray! I have a small Ooni oven with which I made the pizzas shown in the photo at the start of the post.

    It’s a fun thing, and relatively affordable, given the cost of a “real” outdoor pizza oven, something I crave, but which looks like an awful lot of work, even if one doesn’t build one’s own.

    • #3
  4. Amy Schley Moderator
    Amy Schley
    @AmySchley

    Stad (View Comment):

    She: When you need a “pizza fix” (and not in the pricing sense), where do you go? Do you have a favorite chain? A delightful local pizzeria? Do you make your own? What are your favorite toppings? Thin crust? Thick crust? Deep dish? Square or round? Any particular regional style?

    Yes.

    Yeah … I love a margherita flatbread pizza, with a cracker thin crust. I love a Pizza Hut stuffed crust meat lovers. I love a sausage deep dish. I love a chicken alfredo. I even like Hawaiian style with pineapple and Canadian bacon. 

    My only real rule is that if the texture of the crust isn’t fork compatible, then there needs to be a relatively safe place to hold. 

    • #4
  5. MarciN Member
    MarciN
    @MarciN

    My son-in-law paid for much of his college education by working in a pizza shop in Vermont. He makes the best pizza I’ve ever had. I think it was his pizza that won my daughter’s heart. :-) He still makes pizza every Friday night with his son.

    My favorite topping consists of caramelized onions and brie cheese (recipe).

    • #5
  6. PHCheese Member
    PHCheese
    @PHCheese

    Need pizza She, go to Osso’s on Henderson Ave. Washington Pa. Maybe the best. Nice people too.

    • #6
  7. danok1 Member
    danok1
    @danok1

    I prefer NY-style crust. Hard to find when I moved to Charlotte, but there’s a local chain called “Brooklyn Pizza” that serves a close approximation. I’ll take plain, pepperoni, sausage, even a bacon-cheeseburger pie from them.

    I also make my own when the mood hits. I make my own dough and sauce. Toppings are whatever we have on hand (we always have mozzarella on hand).

    The best pizza I’ve had was from Benny Tudino’s in Hoboken, NJ. Totally worth the trip if you’re ever in the vicinity.

    • #7
  8. Juliana Member
    Juliana
    @Juliana

    Papa Dell’s in Champaign IL, deep dish. Holy moly, the best!

    I am pretty bland when it comes to toppings – extra cheese, sausage, pepperoni, bbq chicken or breakfast bacon (not all at once).

    • #8
  9. John H. Member
    John H.
    @JohnH

    When I want pizza, I go to my kitchen, and make one from scratch. Well, two – there’s always enough dough left over for a second, I freeze it, and thaw when needed. For pizza, or calzone.

    Rather than heat up the house with an oven running a half hour, I have recently taken to making grill pizza outdoors. Turn up the gas all the way, get the grill hot, then turn it down by about half and slide on two small discs of flattened dough. Wait, I should back up and tell you what I do before that: slice tomatoes and cheese. Wait, I should say what I do before that: make pesto. After that and that, I put a film of oil on the two little pizzas-to-be, cook on the grill for about 3 minutes, then lift ’em off and flip ’em onto a plate, apply the tomatoes, cheese, and pesto to the cooked sides, then put ’em back on the grill for another 3 minutes.

    • #9
  10. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    She (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    But seriously, I love pizza. I even got three new stainless steel pizza pans for Christmas!

    Hooray! I have a small Ooni oven with which I made the pizzas shown in the photo at the start of the post.

    It’s a fun thing, and relatively affordable, given the cost of a “real” outdoor pizza oven, something I crave, but which looks like an awful lot of work, even if one doesn’t build one’s own.

    Oooooh, I have to check the oven out! Thanks!

    • #10
  11. jeffversion1.0 Coolidge
    jeffversion1.0
    @jvanhorn

    She (View Comment):

    Stad (View Comment):

    But seriously, I love pizza. I even got three new stainless steel pizza pans for Christmas!

    Hooray! I have a small Ooni oven with which I made the pizzas shown in the photo at the start of the post.

    It’s a fun thing, and relatively affordable, given the cost of a “real” outdoor pizza oven, something I crave, but which looks like an awful lot of work, even if one doesn’t build one’s own.

    Totally agree on the pizza oven thing. There are several different little pizza ovens out there. I received a Roccbox pizza oven about a year and a half ago. It’s tricky with wood, so I hook it up to the gas. It took some experimenting, but now I can make pizza at home that I like better than a lot of what I get when we go out.

    • #11
  12. BeatFeet Member
    BeatFeet
    @user_454153

    Pizza Hut personal pan pizza with pepperoni and Italian sausage with a glass of sweet tea to wash it down. Pizza Hut pizzas are the only pizzas that warm up worth a hoot. I buy two on Friday, one for supper and one to warm up (microwave) over the weekend.

    • #12
  13. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    John H. (View Comment):

    When I want pizza, I go to my kitchen, and make one from scratch. Well, two – there’s always enough dough left over for a second, I freeze it, and thaw when needed. For pizza, or calzone.

    Rather than heat up the house with an oven running a half hour, I have recently taken to making grill pizza outdoors. Turn up the gas all the way, get the grill hot, then turn it down by about half and slide on two small discs of flattened dough. Wait, I should back up and tell you what I do before that: slice tomatoes and cheese. Wait, I should say what I do before that: make pesto. After that and that, I put a film of oil on the two little pizzas-to-be, cook on the grill for about 3 minutes, then lift ’em off and flip ’em onto a plate, apply the tomatoes, cheese, and pesto to the uncooked sides, then put ’em back on the grill for another 3 minutes.

    Must try this. Thanks.

    danok1 (View Comment):
    The best pizza I’ve had was from Benny Tudino’s in Hoboken, NJ. Totally worth the trip if you’re ever in the vicinity.

    Unlikely, but I will bear that in mind. Thank you!

    MarciN (View Comment):
    My favorite topping consists of caramelized onions and brie cheese (recipe).

    Sounds wonderful!

    • #13
  14. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    PHCheese (View Comment):

    Need pizza She, go to Osso’s on Henderson Ave. Washington Pa. Maybe the best. Nice people too.

    Yep. A “go to” place when I worked at the hospital up the hill. A Washington PA institution. Home of the square pizza.

    • #14
  15. Al French, poor excuse for a p… Moderator
    Al French, poor excuse for a p…
    @AlFrench

    Hard to believe this post has been up for three hours and @arahant hasn5 yet extolled the virtues of spinach pizza.

    I see that Papa Murphys is now selling a keto friendly crustless “pizza”. Seems oxymoronic.

    • #15
  16. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Al French, poor excuse for a p… (View Comment):
    I see that Papa Murphys is now selling a keto friendly crustless “pizza”. Seems oxymoronic.

    Does it ever. Pizza is not one of those foods whose filling or topping I enjoy more than the crust or base.

    Also, how does one pick it up? Or does one have to eat it with a knife and fork, like de Blasio

     

    • #16
  17. Scott Wilmot Member
    Scott Wilmot
    @ScottWilmot

    I make my own dough and pizza in a Fontana Forni pizza oven. Good mozzarella is the key.

    My favorites are pepperoni, margharita, and a pear pizza with a honey-habanero drizzle.

    • #17
  18. OmegaPaladin Moderator
    OmegaPaladin
    @OmegaPaladin

    I love Chicago style deep dish pizza. I also really like Dominos post-revamp. Pizza Hut and Papa Johns are tied for second best.

    Surprise entry – by far the best value for tasty pizza is Costco. Those are awesome. I will be getting one later today, actually, for my pre-shopping meal.

    I also cannot get enough of the Jack’s Mexican-style frozen pizzas. 

    • #18
  19. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    She: Do you make your own?

    Pretty much have to.

    I make them with three different sauces: red, white (alfredo-ish), or green (pesto). One of these days, I’m going to do red, white, and green, just like the Italian tricolor.

    Toppings vary. Yes, I do make versions with spinach. It’s delicious, even for those who don’t like spinach much. Beyond that, just about anything that isn’t fast enough to get away, I have used on a pizza.

    • #19
  20. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Arahant (View Comment):
    Toppings vary. Yes, I do make versions with spinach. It’s delicious, even for those who don’t like spinach much.

    I will admit to making a vegan version of lasagna for those with milk-protein allergies that is heavy on spinach, tofu, and mushrooms. It’s surprisingly good, and I sometimes make it just because I like it. So I’m not reflexively opposed to spinach in general. Not sure about on pizza, although I’ll take your word for it.

    • #20
  21. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Scott Wilmot (View Comment):

    I make my own dough and pizza in a Fontana Forni pizza oven. Good mozzarella is the key.

    My favorites are pepperoni, margharita, and a pear pizza with a honey-habanero drizzle.

    Those look delicious. Is the honey-habanero drizzle simply honey with finely chopped habaneros? That’s what it looks like in the photo.

    • #21
  22. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    She (View Comment):
    Not sure about on pizza, although I’ll take your word for it.

    Combine it with Feta cheese and almonds and a good pesto sauce. Or, try it with bacon and an alfredo-style sauce.

    • #22
  23. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    There are few things more subjective in life than pizza preferences. I’m in general agreement with the theory that there’s (almost) no such thing as bad pizza, but would put the chains well down my list.

    As a Northeast guy, I think the “best” pizza comes from shops in metropolitan areas that seemed to have perfected a few things: 1) they understand that sauce matters (as opposed to cheese and toppings) 2) they know how to do a light but crisp (not burnt) crust.

    I totally agree with omegapaladin, above, that Costco pizzas are really good.

    I’m also interested in the economics of pizza shops, including chains, in the suburbs. They are everywhere and there’s no end in sight. Do we eat that much pizza–especially when you throw in frozen from markets? I guess so.

    • #23
  24. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Hoyacon (View Comment):
    Do we eat that much pizza–especially when you throw in frozen from markets? I guess so. 

    Yes, we certainly do.

    • #24
  25. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    STOP IT EVERYONE!

    Your comments and pics have made me so damn hungry, I’m going to ditch my diet tonight and have a pizza!

    • #25
  26. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Stad (View Comment):

    STOP IT EVERYONE!

    Your comments and pics have made me so damn hungry, I’m going to ditch my diet tonight and have a pizza!

    Hooray! I’ve succeeded!

    • #26
  27. Hoyacon Member
    Hoyacon
    @Hoyacon

    While we’re on the topic, will someone please explain the Domino’s “pizza guarantee” (or whatever it’s called) to me? So they mess up an order and then “make it right.” Well, shouldn’t they do that anyway? If I order pepperoni and mushroom and get pineapple and anchovies, you better d*** well make it right. Why is that worth crowing about?

    These are things I wonder about.

    • #27
  28. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Hoyacon (View Comment):

    While we’re on the topic, will someone please explain the Domino’s “pizza guarantee” (or whatever it’s called) to me? So they mess up an order and then “make it right.” Well, shouldn’t they do that anyway? If I order pepperoni and mushroom and get pineapple and anchovies, you better d*** well make it right. Why is that worth crowing about?

    These are things I wonder about.

    It’s like their ad campaign “Oh yes we did!” If people thought their pizzas sucked, they’d change things. However, to advertise “We used to suck, now we don’t” is a little weird. I never thought they sucked, I just thought others (like Papa John’s) had better tasting pizza.

    • #28
  29. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    For Kate and me:

    1960’s till now

    • Prep’s, on the Boardwalk in Ocean City, New Jersey
    • Pinocchio’s in Media, Pa.

    1970’s till now

    • Ferrato’s*, Manchester Rd., St. Louis suburbs
    • Pizzeria Uno, Pizzeria Due, and Gino’s on the North Side of Chicago.

    1980’s till now

    • Carmine’s, in Eagle, Pa., just off the Penna. Turnpike;
    • Uncle Oogie’s, Sea Isle City, NJ

    *Farrato’s has a thin crust, but beyond that, it is a style of its own as far as we know. Their website says that they consider it Jersey style. OK, but I have never had pizza in Jersey (or New York, or Philly, or the South Jersey Shore, or Maryland, or Boston) that even remotely resembles it. In fact, I’ve never had a pizza anywhere but the East Coast that looked, felt, smelled, or tasted even remotely like East Coast pizza, which I have always referred to, for short, as “pizza”. We have discovered two wonderful “pizza substitutes”: Ferrato’s, and real Chicago style pizza.

     

    • #29
  30. RushBabe49 Thatcher
    RushBabe49
    @RushBabe49

    Here’s another vote for Costco pizza. I live within 6 blocks of the local store, and on bachelorette nights when Ray goes to workout after work, I stop there on the way home and get a slice. Not a bad dinner for $2.16 or so, since the slices are so big. I sometimes make a take-and-bake one, but they are too big for our oven, so I have to cook them 1/2 at a time.

    When we get pizza together, we order from Silver Lake Pizza near our house-they make sort of a Greek-style pizza, with Ray’s favorite topping, fresh tomatoes (and pepperoni, sausage, green peppers, and onions).

    However, the best pizza I ever had was the ones my first husband and I used to make ourselves. He made the crust from a mix, and I made the sauce. One of our pizzas had about a pound of whole-milk mozzarella and 1/2 pound of Cascioppo Brothers pepperoni (made in Seattle, about a mile from our house). He liked black olives, so that was his responsibility.

    • #30

Comments are closed because this post is more than six months old. Please write a new post if you would like to continue this conversation.