Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pizza Everyday - Next Level Homemade Pizza

Yesterday I realized that I wanted some pizza for dinner and decided to use the items in my kitchen and garden, instead of money, to make it. I googled "pizza dough recipe" and just used one at random. I forgot how easy it was to make pizza dough at home, it takes like no time to prepare then you just walk away for an hour while it rises. When it was ready we added olive oil, salt/pepper, garlic, tomatoes and basil (from garden) as well as fresh mozzarella (which, admittedly was purchased from the store for this very purpose).

It looked real good:

But once baked, it looked even better:

And then eating it was a f'ing dream:

As you can probably tell, it was quite doughy and messy. I suppose if one wanted thinner crust, they could just use half the amount of dough or a larger pan. Either way, if you like kneading and pizza and eating delicious things, homemade dough is the way to go.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Two Boots Pizza

We went to Two Boots Pizza located at Power Plant Live on August 18. The name refers to the fact that Louisiana and Italy both resemble shoes. It was a damp night. The ambiance of the place was feathers and beads, New Orleans, and part Hillary Duff as Elizabeth Cady Stanton. We ordered two pizzas. The ORCHIDIA, which was our choice of five toppings. We created a white pizza with eggplant, garlic, artichokes, sundried tomatoes, and spinach.

The spinach appeared to have been the frozen kind as opposed to fresh. The eggplant on the pizza was breaded and was a much welcomed surprise. A knife and fork were required to eat this pizza as we did not trust the crust to withstand the topping weight. We had an overall positive experience with this pizza.

We also ordered the "Tony Clifton", which was red pepper pesto, wild mushrooms, vidalia onions, and mozzarella. The pesto was dabbed on top of the cheese, while the regular sauce was underneath. Some thoughts about this pizza: "There is a lot going on in my mouth".

The appearance of this pizza was questionable, but the majority of our group throughly enjoyed it. Our waiter said this was one of his favorite pizzas.

The crust is thin in a different way than other Baltimore thin crust pizzas (perhaps because it originated in New York?). It was crispy on the edges with a doughy consistency under the cheese. The dough is dusted with cornmeal. Though we only ordered vegetarian pizzas, Two Boots offers ones with crab, crawfish, sausage, and other cajun delights.

The service was prompt and our waiter was very friendly and accommodating. Even though we were there at 6 pm, there really weren't any other eat-in customers. The Power Plant Live area seems like a strange place, with activity around lunchtime and later in the evening. They do have a pizza by the slice option from an outdoor stand for patrons of the nearby bars. Two Boots pizza does have a liquor license. They also have other non-pizza options; we did not try these things. I feel that when the location opens up by MICA, it will be more accessible/successful than Power Plant.

We give them a 6 out of 8 slices mainly due to the fact that they use frozen spinach.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Zella's Pizza

oops this took a long time to post! I still can taste their delicious pizza though

We went on June 7 2010, a Monday evening, which is buy one, get one pizza night. We ordered Olive's Roasted Eggplant, a Margarita, Chicken Pesto, and Portobello Pizzas. The seasonings available on the table were parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, and oregano. The Eggplant pizza had two reports of pits in the olives, but we decided that it was still delicious. This does point to them using fresh olives as opposed to canned.

first pie arrives

a slice of eggplant

bitten but not shy

The Chicken Pesto pizza had very light pesto and we thought they should either up the pesto content or take it out of the name.

pesto chicken

In general the pizzas had a lot of crust to them, but the crust was very good. It was fluffy rather than dense or gummy. The pizza was structurally sound, the dough was able to support large quantities of toppings. The Margarita and Portobello pizzas were also excellent.


Zella's offers a full bodied pizza and on Mondays they offer a lot of bang for your buck. Go before 7 to get a dollar off on your drinks. We were very happy with our experience and I can't wait to go back. The service was very fast and the ingredients were fresh (better pizza???)

many make the BCP sign

Some quotes from the night:
"Good texture, kind of scratching the roof of my mouth."
"Oh my God, I love pizza!"

9.5 out of 10 only due to the disappointment with the pesto pizza.

but angelica was fine with us

see more picture's at Jaime's Flickr
Baltimore Pizza Club @Zella

Meeting change

Last minute change:

the Pizza Club meeting will be happening on Wednesday, August 18. Same time, same place.

Pizza News: The life-saving qualities of pizza

The life-saving qualities of pizza
Research – from Italy, would you believe – suggests that pizza can be good for your health

Marc Abrahams Monday 16 August 2010 16.30 BST

Tasty: the benefits of Italian pizza. Photograph: Massimo Borchi/Corbis

A series of Italian research studies suggest that eating pizza might do good things for a person's health.

These benefits show up, statistically speaking and seasoned with caveats, among people who eat pizza as pizza. The delightful statistico-medico-pizza effects do not happen so much, the researchers emphasise, for individuals who eat the pizza ingredients individually.

Back in 2001, Dario Giugliano, Francesco Nappo and Ludovico Coppola, at Second University Naples, published a study in the journal Circulation called Pizza and Vegetables Don't Stick to the Endothelium. The thrust of their finding was that, unlike many other typical Italian meals, pizza does not necessarily cause clogged blood vessels (atherosclerosis) and death.

Silvano Gallus of the Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche, in Milan, has cooked up several studies about the health effects of ingesting pizza.

In 2003, together with colleagues from Naples, Rome and elsewhere, Gallus published a report called Does Pizza Protect Against Cancer?, in the International Journal of Cancer. It compares several thousand people who were treated for cancer of the oral cavity, pharynx, oesophagus, larynx, colon, or rectum with patients who were treated for other, non-cancer ailments. Several hospitals gathered data about what the patients said they habitually ate. The study ends up speaking, in a vague, general way of an "apparently favourable effect of pizza on cancer risk in Italy".

A year later, in a monograph in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention, Gallus and two colleagues wrote that: "Regular consumption of pizza, one of the most typical Italian foods, showed a reduced risk of digestive tract cancers."

Also in 2004, another team anchored by Gallus published a monograph called Pizza and Risk of Acute Myocardial Infarction, in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. As you would expect from the title, its purpose was "to evaluate the potential role of pizza consumption on the risk of acute myocardial infarction". Gallus and his team "suggest that pizza consumption is a favourable indicator" for preventing, or at least not causing, heart attacks.

Gallus is in no way claiming that pizza prevents all ills. A Gallus-led study called Pizza Consumption and the Risk of Breast, Ovarian and Prostate Cancer appeared in 2006 in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention. These types of cancer are thought to arise differently than the kinds believed to be warded off by pizza. The study puts its message bluntly: "Our results do not show a relevant role of pizza on the risk of sex hormone-related cancers."

The Gallus studies all hedge their bets a bit. Each says, in one way or another (and here I'm paraphrasing them): "Pizza may in fact merely represent a general indicator of the so-called Mediterranean diet, which has been shown to have potential health benefits."

All of this pertains to Italian-made pizza, metabolised in Italy. No matter how accurate the scientists' interpretations turn out to be, there's no guarantee that they hold true for foreign pizza, or for any pizza eaten anywhere by foreigners.

• Marc Abrahams is editor of the bimonthly Annals of Improbable Research and organiser of the Ig Nobel prize


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Next Meeting

Our next meeting will be at Two Boots Pizza. This New York transplant is located at Power Plant Live. We will be meeting on Tuesday August 17th at 6pm.

Did you know that Two Boots is planning on opening up a location at the new commercial/residential complex near MICA on Mt Royal?