Sometimes you just want comfort food. This pizza is comfortable and comforting. This is a pizza that will warm the cockles of your heart. There isn't much fanciness about it. This version isn't what we'd call artisan, or pushing the limits of artisanship anywhere. It's just good. It's just sauce, cheese and salami.
You can, of course, make this fancier. You can go down to the deli, or your fancy gourmet market and get yourself a funky cool salami with some wild name and it will likely be even better yet. I would make this with sopressata, speck, a specialty salami, or any artisanal hand crafted salted pork product I can find and each unique product will definitely give this pizza it's own unique expression of what is possible by bringing quality ingredients together and making something bigger than the whole of the parts.
That day I was in the mood for comfort and I was home and didn't want to go shopping. I had the dough, cheese, tomatoes and some basic sandwich salami -- in a bag. This salami is meant to process sandwiches for hungry kids and families on the go. It's perfect for a last minute party platter if such an occasion arrises. Though it's in a bag it's still good! In my opinion salted/cured pork is by it's nature simply good.
Have you ever seen the Simpson's episode called "Lisa the Vegetarian"? Homer explains the specialness of pork here better than anyone. Lisa declares that she is no longer able to eat meat after a visit to a farm where she got to pet some of the little cuddly animals. Here's the "meat" of the conversation (pun intended)…where Homer continues in shock:
Homer: Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute! Lisa, honey, are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again? What about bacon?
Homer: Pork chops?
Lisa: Dad! Those all come from the same animal!
Homer: [Laughing] Yeah, right Lisa. A wonderful, "maaaagical" animal! [Laughing]
For the record...I am not saying anything negative here about vegetarians! I love vegetarian pizzas as well. It's just a shame they don't get to eat this magical animal in all of it's forms - especially the salted/cured ones and the slow barbecued, roasted, or grilled ones!
Okay, moving on before I bury myself here and alienate half of our readers...
Simple Salami Pizza
Pizza Quest Signature Beer Dough *LINK
Simply Red Tomatoes turned into Peter's Crushed Tomato Sauce *LINK
(*Any good quality canned tomato will work)
Red Chili Flakes
*Peter's Crushed Tomato Sauce is a perfect pizza sauce. Once you make it a few times following his recipe, you can start to do it on your own, just adding what feels right. This is so simple and tastes so fresh I really don't see any reason to do anything else when I'm using a tomato sauce. When I first tried it after reading Peter's book, "American Pie: My Search for the Perfect Pizza," I literally thought, "This is it! This is the perfect pizza sauce." Now I know perfect is not possible, but this may be an exception.
The Prep and Build:
Build the pizza by placing the Crushed Tomato Sauce on the dough.
I added a swirl of Olive Oil to the sauce
Add grated Mozzarella
Add Salami, sliced thin -- your favorite kind, but Genoa is pretty hard to beat
Place pizza into the oven. If you have it, switch the oven over to Convection Bake, which seems to give me a better bake.
Check the pizza in about 7 Minutes. When it's done, remove it. I'm looking for charring on the salami and crust. I love the little burnt bits and tips of the ingredients and dough!
Hellllo -- look at this!! I typically don't have an idea of what I want to write when I make pizzas for this site. I have an idea of what I want to eat, or explore, and when I come back and pull up the photos and think about the pizza I just see how the combination of my notes, photos and memory come together. For this pizza, my first thought was Comfort Food, simple and fine, perfect for drop in guests (at least the meat eating ones)! Thanks for stopping by for a visit...
Give this a try and send us your own versions with photos and a story!