Thursday, June 7, 2012
The Best Thing I Ever Ate: Pizza Edition
There's a restaurant a few towns over from where I went to college. Actually, I'm not even one hundred percent sure I can call it a restaurant - it was basically a couple of tables in a man's living room. There were no menus, no prices, he cooked in his personal kitchen right next to the living room where we ate. The place doesn't even have a name - it's listed under just the letter "T" in the local phonebook, and you need to call a few hours ahead of time to see if the owner will be around and up for having company for dinner.
I'll admit I was skeptical the first time we went after a recommendation from one of our professors, but I was absolutely blown away by the food we were served. The owner asked what we were in the mood for, if we had any allergies or dietary restrictions, took stock of the ingredients he had on hand, and decided to make us pizza. And let me tell you, pizza has never been the same for me again.
His crust was whole-wheat and homemade - soft and chewy, just the right thickness, and cooked to perfection. His sauce was seasoned unbelievably well - a little sweet, a little salty, and downright addictive. He used spinach and mozzarella cheese - both fresh and colorful, but the walnuts are what really made the pizza. I know what you're thinking, I thought it too, but the man knows what he's doing. Walnuts chopped up and sprinkled on the pizza add a nice crunch and really help to bring out the flavors of all the other ingredients. It's unexpected, but delicious, and I don't know why more pizza joints haven't picked up on it. I'm obsessed, clearly, but who could blame me? If Shakespeare was still around, I bet he'd write sonnets about that pizza.
Although I unfortunately haven't had the chance to return to that restaurant in a few years now, I do my best to recreate that pizza in my own kitchen. Although I'm not sure it'll ever really compare, it's still pretty darn good. And guess what we're having for dinner tonight?