October 29, 2008

Pizza. It's Italian for leftovers...

Or at least that's what I thought growing up. I didn't learn until late in high school that for most of America, pizza came out of a cardboard box, ordered over the phone and delivered by a teenager. Or that sadly the box often had more flavor.

In our household, Nona's yeast-based, hand-tossed pizza dough was a receptacle for whatever was leftover from the bounty of garden vegetables in the summer, root vegetables in the winter, sprinkled with anchovies during Lent and a couple of generous handfuls of Papa's homemade sausage, salami "e pro-shoot" the rest of the year.

I never got to toss the pizza dough as a kid, so when Rosa of Rosa's Yummy Yums chose Peter Reinhart's Pizza Napoletana from the Bread Baker's Apprentice as our Daring Baker challenge for October and made hand-tossing the dough an integral part of the challenge, I knew my grandmother'd be smiling down on me from *somewhere*. And as luck would have it, I had some leftover CSA veggies and a couple of Italian sausages in the fridge needing to be used up before we head out on vacation.

Unfortunately it was a busy week for John, so I don't have any images of the pizza-tossing experience. Rest assured it was every bit as much fun as my grandmother made it look thirty-some years ago. And the end result every bit as tasty.

For thousands of other takes on the pizza challenge, check out the Daring Baker Blogroll.

From the archives...
In 2007 the Daring Baker challenge was all about the Bostini.

October 27, 2008

Remember me?

Um... hello? Is this thing on?

Where did September go? And October?

Several of you have sent email inquiring what I've been up to. I wish I had more exciting news to share. I didn't win the lottery and quit my day job. We're not pregnant. We've been busy, but not with anything interesting enough to write about here. And although I *have* been cooking and baking as time allows, the time necessary to draft a post and the muse required to make it readable haven't converged recently. But I've got pictures, and there'll be posts coming soon.

In good-if-not-interesting news, things are beginning to lighten up a bit. My project at work has reached another milestone and there's a light at the end of that tunnel. We're about to embark on my first two week vacation in 23 years -- we'll be sailing through the Panama Canal on Celebrity's Infinity starting Sunday. The food looks promising, and I will certainly share it here.

First up, the Daring Bakers do Italian...