You're gonna need some oven mittens for this Homemade Pizza Recipe!
So, since there are 3 parts to a pizza (the sauce, the crust & the toppings), I'm going to break this recipe into 3 parts too. To me, the sauce is key - the most important part. Let's get started with the sauce, shall we?
Put on your apron! Here is what you're gonna need:
A clove of garlic, a medium onion (or a few pearl onions), 1/4 tsp salt, 1/8 tsp pepper, 1 tbsp Italian seasonings and 1 tbsp parsley.
Those are my salt & pepper shakers on the left. They are part of my vintage Ransburg collection. The rooster's name is Chanticleer. Is that a cool name, or what? I digress... You will also need 1/2 tsp sugar, just enough to cut the acidity of the tomatoes. (That's my sugar canister in the middle- it is also vintage Ransburg.)
Speaking of tomatoes, you will need 4-6 tomatoes to yield 1.5 cups diced tomatoes. So, get out your food chopper & your vegetable slicer...
Just kidding... Although, I have made this with tomatoes from my garden in the past (& it is to-die-for!), I typically use the following: 1 can of Hunt's Petite Cut Diced Tomatoes, 6 oz of tomato paste & 1 cup of V8 juice.
Go ahead & chop up the onion & garlic. Saute them until the garlic is a bit brown & the onions are translucent. Kinda like this...
From start... to finish!
Add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, V8 juice & the spices. Simmer together.
Now, the next items are a must! A crusty loaf of Italian bread & a bottle of red Italian wine.
OK, you caught me. That's a bottle of French wine.
Sorry, I drank all of the Italian wine already. And then I actually stuck a plant in it. Sorta like a stuck a plant in the bidet in our Italian apartment.
You're going to add a splash of red wine to the tomato sauce. This gives it a deep red color and a certain kick. Feel free to drink the rest of the bottle of wine, if you'd like. Then, tear off a piece of the bread to test your tomato sauce. Your testing it for seasoning & consistencty. Add a bit more of whatever you think it may be lacking & adjust the seaoning to suit your taste. If the sauce is too thin, simmer it down some more. If the sauce is too thick, add some water.
This is what perfection looks like!
Alrighty, time for the toppings. I like to use the soft mozzarella cheese- the kind that comes in a ball & is kinda squishy- & cut off several slices, but shredded cheese also works OK. Slice up whatever else you plan to use as a topping- bell peppers are my personal favorite.
Last, but not least... time for the crust. Remember the Italian cookbook? Remember I told you that I had a secret ingredient? I spent hours translating the recipe. Here is what it said...
1) Go to the grocery store
2) Go to the refrigerated aisle
3) Choose the refrigerated pizza crust dough of your choice
4) Purchase it & take it home
5) Follow package directions
What? You don't believe me? Trust me! Remember, I used to live in Italy. Here's my secret ingredient...
If you have a favorite homemade pizza crust recipe you'd like to use, go right ahead.
(You overachiever, you!)
Spread the dough onto your pan & then spread on the scrumptious homemade sauce we made.
Look, you can even see all the spices & little pieces of onion!
Lay out your cheese wedges. A precise & symmetrical pattern is of utmost importance.
Then throw on some veggies. A random pattern is of utmost importance.
Hey, look. I found some leftover ham in the fridge. Let's dice that up & throw it on there too.
Here's what my pizza looks like just before going in the oven...
Bake according to your refrigerated pizza crust's instructions.
Here it is as it comes out of the oven...
All bubbly & ooey-gooey! How yummy, is that? And I swear, nobody will really notice that you cheated & used the refrigerated pizza crust from the cute little Pillsbury dough boy.
If you'll excuse me, I'm sorta hungry now & I'm gonna go get a snack!
P.S. I use this sauce in many, many of my recipes & we will probably be referring to it again.
P.S.S. You can add lots of stuff to this sauce for variety: bell peppers, mushrooms, ground beef, meatballs, sausage, some gator, some crawfish, some frog legs... whatever floats your boat!