In Praise Of Homemade Pizza

Take it from a guy who has eaten a lot of pizzas: One of the best pizzas you'll ever have is the one that comes out of your oven. Don't believe my pizza credentials? I've downed pies from Portland (Oregon) to Paris (France) and from Milan to Miami. I've supped on slices at legendary Brooklyn spots both old school (Di Faro and Grimaldi's) and new school (Motorino and Franny's). I've judged pizza contests, eaten pizza for breakfast, fought off pizza thieves on 6th Street in Austin, Texas during South By Southwest. In short, I love pizza.

Which is why it's kind of weird that I've only recently gotten into making pizza at home. It happened suddenly, after I made an impulse buy of a pizza pan one day a few years back. Ever since, homemade pizza has been a go-to way to use leftover sauce from a more serious Italian dinner, or just an impromptu meal thrown together with ready-made ingredients from the Italian shop across the street.

The somewhat gnarly pizza you see here (sorry, shot with an iPhone) was made using a variation on Food Republic's tomato sauce recipe and whole wheat dough that my fiancée procured at Brooklyn's Union Market, then stretched using a rolling pin. We topped the pizza with fresh mozzarella from the Italian shop across the street and some fresh basil leaves from our window box herb garden. We cooked the pizza on the round pizza pan at about 450 degrees for 20 minutes, then fired up the broiler to brown the cheese a bit, just for a couple minutes. I wish I'd invested in a pizza stone instead of the metal pan, as the crust would have been crunchier, but every bite tasted so fresh and delicious that I didn't mind.

It's gonna take me awhile to perfect my technique and achieve pizza greatness like the kind we so often feature here at Food Republic, but I'm pretty damn proud of my homemade pizza. Try making one yourself and you'll be proud too.