Tuesday, December 25, 2007


In the city of pizza, Y and I have rediscovered the joy of homemade pizza. Y got a pizza stone several years ago for his bday but it's been largely neglected ... until this week. We've made 6 pizzas in less than a week. Mmmm good.
  • Empty a pack of yeast into 1/2 cup of warm water and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, pulse 4 cups of bread flour (King Arther is my favorite) and 1.5 tspn salt in the bowl of a food processor (or wisk together in a bowl if you aren't a kitchen gadget queen).
  • Add 1 1/4 cups of room temperature water to the yeast + 2 tbspn of olive oil and mix together to dissolve the yeast.
  • Pour water/yeast mix into food processor while running and continue to pulse until the dough pulls together into a large ball. Process for about 30 seconds until the dough looks sort of satiny. (Some rough approximation thereof is just fine.)
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and give it some good hard kneading until it forms a nice ball.
  • Stick in an oiled bowl, covered with saran wrap (best for keeping in the moisture) or a towel and let rise for 1.5 to 2.0 hours until doubled.
  • Meanwhile prep your toppings (oiling the cheese grater before grating makes the job much easier and the grater easier to clean afterwards - my favorite new trick of 2007).
  • You can make a great sauce by frying some crushed garlic in a pan with some olive oil (just until fragrant, don't burn it). Add 28 oz. of crushed tomatoes (run them through the food processor if whole or diced) and cook down for 10-15 minutes. I love to add red pepper, fennel and oregano but it's not necessary.
  • Once the dough is done rising - heat your oven to 500 degrees. If you have a stone in there, it's good to keep it at this temperature for 30 minutes so that the stone can warm up fully.
  • Divide your dough into 3 pieces (for 3 medium size pizzas) and let rest for at least 10 minutes but not more than 30 minutes. Getting your dough into a crust shape is the hardest part, just don't let it be too thick, but you'll figure it out and the wonky handmade look is sort of endearing and it all tastes great in the end.
  • Brush the crust with olive oil (to keep the crust from getting soggy) and top with your favorites. (My favorite is green peppers, onions, oil cured olives, fresh basil, pepperoni and mozzerella.) A pizza peel makes getting it into and out of the oven easiest but I'm sure you could innovate a good trick in its absence.
  • Bake until the cheese and crust look done ... at least 10 minutes in my experience.

Mmmm mmmmm good!

Since I don't celebrate Christmas, this is sort of a strange time of year for us. I'm really glad that Baby Y is too young to know what's going on but that won't last forever ...

Abandoned When Genius Fails, decided that reading aobut the demise of an overleveraged, computer model driven hedge fund wasn't all that useful or interesting. Just finished Value Investing Today by Brandes and am slowly working on Money Masters of Our Time. Sort of silly but oh so appealing. Ironic to read after Taleb disparaging our lust for anecdotes of success all the while ignoring reasonable accounts of failure. I felt like I wasted so much time last week. Working at home is distracting. But I have gads of cover letters pending and so much stock pick work to do.

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