I had great fun at the Barnes & Noble this past Saturday signing SENSELESS and MERCILESS and meeting fans. Big thanks to everyone that came by!
With snow coming down and my refrigerator running on empty, I decided to take what remained in my crisper and turn it into home pizzas. First on tap was the dough, which turned out to be quite easy. After kneading the dough and letting it rest, I turned my attention to toppings. I then put my pizza stone in a cold oven and preheated to three hundred and fifty degrees before caramelizing onions, sautéing artichoke hearts and Canadian bacon and roasting garlic. By the time my toppings were ready, my dough had risen and my pizza stone was hot. . With last night’s leftover marina as base, it became just a matter of taking orders, assembling, baking and eating.
1 package of active dry yeast
2 cups of warm water
1 teaspoon of sugar
1 teaspoon of salt
4 cups of flour
Dissolve yeast in warm water and toss in sugar. Let rest for five minutes or until the yeast bubbles. Mix in flour. If the dough it too sticky, add additional flour in ¼ cup increments. When you can handle the dough fairly easily turn out onto a work surface and start kneading. It took me ten minutes of working the dough and dusting it with flour to get the right consistency for pizza dough. Let in rest in an oiled and covered bowl for about an hour
These topping are what I had on hand but you can use just about anything. Other favorites include mozzarella cheese, pineapple, and mushrooms.
A note about your pizza stone: put it in a cold oven and then preheat. If you put a cold stone in a hot oven it could crack.
I grab a handful of dough and pull it into a circle/oval. Next I dust a wooden peel with flour and lay the dough on it. I assemble toppings on dough. I jostle the peel back and forth to make sure my dough can move and then I open the oven and slide the pizza onto the stone. Cook for 10-12 minutes.
A note about assembly: Don’t assemble a pizza on the peel and then just let it sit while you’re waiting for another pizza to cook. The pizza will really stick to the peel. The trick is to assemble the pizza and put it immediately into the oven.
Buddy, Bella and I rang in the New Year at Snowshoe, West Virginia. What a beautiful place!
Christmas snuck up on me this year but I managed to pack in several weeks worth of work in a couple of days. Lots of fun but I am ready to chill this week.
I had a blast at the New Jersey Romance Writer’s Conference. Met lots of new folks, caught up with old friends and attended some great craft and business sessions.
I attended the Writers Police Academy this past weekend in Jamestown, NC. This event was jam-packed with demonstrations and seminars. I attended a session on “Why People Kill”, an autopsy seminar, guns, profiling serial offenders and undercover work. This is an event I will definitely attend again!