When Elly announced her idea for a new blogging event, Eat to the Beat, I certainly felt the pressure of a challenge. You see, I’m sort of embarassed to admit, but I’m not really a music person. I might be the only person I know without and Ipod and without any means of downloading music-type-software installed on my computer. I don’t buy CDs and I don’t have that knack for remembering lyrics, artists, and beats galore. I leave all that to my husband, a former music major. Don’t get me wrong, I like listening to the radio well enough, but I just don’t delve much further beyond that. Luckily, however, I do like food. I also like Italy. So, one of the first songs that came to mind was Amore, written by Harry Warren and performed by Dean Martin (thank you, Wikipedia). You know exactly which one I am talking about – the pizza song! And doesn’t it make perfect sense to write a song about love and sing about pizza? I mean, who doesn’t love pizza?
I’ve just discovered I love pizza even more by taking on the additional challenge of making my own dough. Yup, I was a pizza dough virgin, but am no longer. I’m not sure what my hesitation was; perhaps the idea of making something for a weeknight dinner that involves a whole hour or more of waiting. Because I go to the gym just about every day, I get home late and want a quick dinner – I just don’t have time to wait around for that! But lately I’ve been building my collection of DVD’s to work out at home. And it just so happens that if I came home and started my dough and left it to rise, I have the perfect amount of time to go do a challenging workout in the basement before coming back to finish my pizza. Perfect!
To find a dough recipe, I turned to a blogger I know and trust: Shawnda, the Foodie Bride. She’s always turning out beautiful food and seems full of knowledge and experience on all kinds of techniques, both the basics and beyond. Shawnda swears by a recipe from Gourmet. Now, I know I already said I trust her – and that’s the truth – but as you know I can never stick a recipe just as written. I changed this up just a bit by replacing half of the flour with whole wheat, and using a bit of honey in place of sugar. Using my stand mixer with the dough hook attachment for kneading made it perfectly easy too. It turned out wonderfully, and produced a thin, crispy, yet tender and flavorful crust. Thank you Shawnda for the recipe!
I topped my pizza with a quick and easy homemade chunky tomato sauce with toasted garlic, crushed red pepper, and a pinch of brown sugar. Slices of tender roasted eggplant and sweet yellow roasted peppers, studded with dollops of creamy goat cheese completed the pie. What more is there to say? Thanks Elly for dreaming up this event and challenging me to both think about food in music and try something new in my kitchen.