Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Last Safe Prejudice Pan Pizza

William Howard Taft (1909-1913) was our last fat president.  He had a larger bath tub installed in the White House, and there is an unproven story that it is because he got stuck in the previous White House tub.

It seems unlikely that people will vote for a fat candidate for President in this day and age, because despite all of the progress in regard to diversity, people still think it is O.K. to make fun of fat folks.  I mean, really, Chris Christie for President?  His MASSIVE popularity notwithstanding, people will have a HUGE problem voting for him.  Who can focus on the LARGER issues when there are AMPLE fat jokes?  The BIG issue will be his weight.  You get the point.

On Fat Tuesday, I challenge Americans to judge people not by their size but by their abilities and character.

The Last Safe Prejudice Pan Pizza

This pizza is BIG on flavor, with a THICK homemade crust and A LOT of cheese.  Enjoy with a glass of red wine while you CHEW THE FAT!

1 cup bread flour
3/4 cup whole wheat bread flour
1 tsp. salt
3/4 cup warm water
3 Tbsp. olive oil, divided
2 tsp. yeast
1-1/2 tsp. honey
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded provalone cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 can (14 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Chopped parsley or basil

Combine bread flour, whole wheat bread flour and salt in work bowl of food processor fitted with metal blade.  Pulse to combine.  In glass measuring cup combine water, 1 Tbsp. oil, yeast and honey.  With processor running, pour yeast mixture through feed tube.  Run processor 1 minute (after about 15 seconds the dough will come together in a ball and whip around the work bowl). Remove dough from bowl (dough will be sticky) and knead on counter or other hard work surface with a little bit of flour.  Stretch into a 6x8-inch rectangle.

Pour remaining oil in 15x10-inch jelly roll pan.  Place dough in pan and turn over to coat both sides with oil.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise 1 hour or until double.

Stretch dough to sides of pan.  Cover and let rise 40 minutes.  Heat oven to 500°F.

Top dough with combined cheeses, then dollop with combined tomatoes, garlic, oregano and pepper.  Bake 15 minutes or until edges are golden brown and cheese is melted.   Top with chopped parsley or basil and cut with scissors to serve.

For best results, bake on bottom rack of oven.

For Mexican pizza, substitute shredded chihuaha cheese for mozzarella and provalone cheeses; use chunky salsa, drained, instead of diced tomatoes; top pizza with chopped fresh cilantro instead of parsley or basil.

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