12inchpetetreat

The place where pizza comes to be written about

Move And A Pizza #4: The Other Guys, accompanied by a heavily pimped Co-Op Chargrilled Chicken

Okay, so we weren’t away that long.

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, and so am I, on account of this blog. So for this week’s Movie And A Pizza, I decided to opt for a “slimline” pizza and go for a Co-Op chargrilled chicken (700 calories, which makes it the stick of celery of the pizza world), which I augmented with some buffalo mozzerella, chilli flakes and honey roast ham, and some Pizza Hut garlic and herb dip (thereby negating the slimline nature of the pizza in the first place), to accompany The Other Guys, starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg.

First up, the film. Now, at first glance, The Other Guys seems like it might be a bit, well, cretinous. Absurd, pointlessly pyrotechnic opening scene, Samuel L. Jackson shouting in that way that he tends to use to compensate for the paucity of the material (Deep Blue Sea, anyone?), and an early crap joke involving a hot dog vendor. So far, so not-very-good. Almost all of the chief characters seem thoroughly unlikable, Will Ferrell is doing that Will Ferrell stiff-backed-nerd-in-a-world-of-jocks act that he often does. It feels for all the world like a Hollywood high-concept action comedy stuffed full of stars (Jackson! Ferrell! Wahlberg! Keaton! Coogan! The Rock! Ray Stevenson from Rome! Eva Mendes! Erm, Anne Heche…?) instead of any good jokes.

Well, stick with it. Really. Because as it develops, it soon blossoms into a series of extremely funny scenes which, although held together by the flimsiest of plots, are consistently what we in the movie reviewing game call “a hoot” in the hope that we’ll bag a poster quote out of it. Because that’s why us journalists get into the game in the first place, to be quoted on posters. There’s a very funny scene where the excellently twitchy, thwarted Wahlberg goes for dinner with his partner Ferrell for the first time, and finds with increasing disbelief that he is not only married to Eva Mendes’ stunning arse doctor (she’s an arse doctor who is stunning, not a doctor who only works on stunning arses) but he also a) doesn’t appear to find her very attractive and b) seemingly has an entire life history of similarly stunning girlfriends. There’s an even funnier scene when Wahlberg and Ferrell attempt to do a nice-and-nasty routine on Steve Coogan’s crooked banker, but Ferrell thinks that they are both meant to be playing the bad guy and beats the crap out of Coogan, something I’d assume we’d all enjoy doing. There’s a superb running gag about the fact that Wahlberg’s character became an expert ballet dancer and classical musician in his youth specifically so that he could mock “cissy kids” with his proficiency at their activities, and a truly masterful “love scene” in which Mendes, holed out at her ageing mother’s staked-out house, communicates her desire to a hiding Ferrell (and vice versa) by sending the old dear tottering out on a Zimmer frame to relay increasingly lurid sexual fantasies between husband and wife. All in all, greatly enjoyable, and a charming final gag involving a peacock too.

Note dip. VERY important

And so to the pizza, once again purchased in my local Co-Op and given a little pimping (actually, that reminds me of ANOTHER funny scene in The Other Guys, in which Ferrell explains how he inadvertently became a pimp while at college, but I digress) with some buffalo mozzerella, which I now have on constant call in the 12 Inch Pete Treat refrigerator, and honey roast ham. I overdid the chilli flakes AGAIN, because that’s what I do, but that was counteracted by some delightful Pizza Hut garlic and herb dip – Dominos, you need to be very careful about this, it could mount a serious challenge to your G&H superiority – and on a cold night in South London, and a Tuesday night at that, and a Tuesday night when I was deliberately not drinking, and on a Tuesday night when I was worrying about the cost of Christmas, and on a Tuesday night when racked with seasonal self-loathing, and on a… Okay, you get the picture. What I’m saying is, the pizza more than did the job for the occasion, for an outlay of £2 (pizza) plus 57p (mozzerella) plus 87p (ham) = £3.42. Truly, a pizza for a double-dip recession.

THE VERDICT

THE FILM: The Other Guys gets a very positive 8.5 out of 10. A rip-roaring barn-storming side-splitter of an action-comedy. There, stick that on your poster.

THE PIZZA: I’m always biased when I have tried a little pizza-pimping myself, so I’m going to give the pizza 8 out of 10, although, by Christ, a couple of glasses of Rioja would have gone down a storm with it.

Filed under: Movie And A Pizza

Normal service will be resumed presently

Hi all! Just a quick note to let you all know that, after coming into the blog game with all guns blazing, I’m now going to take a little bit of me time away from the world of pizza. I shall return…

Filed under: Uncategorized

Movie And A Pizza #3.1: Martin Daubney on Mr Mom and a Pizza Pan Milano

Pete says: This week’s M&AP is a guest drop from Mr Martin Daubney, former Loaded editor and a man who arguably knowns more about mid-1980s high-concept comedy than anyone in the civilised world…

“Mmm, pizza make anything in the entire world better” is the kind of throwaway comment that disciples of the crust might casually grenade into an anodyne social gathering, as their fangs sink into yet another magmatic Pepperoni Passion.

But is there any truth in it?

Well, I, for one, think so. Several years ago I found that the funeral of a particularly fond Auntie was definitely uplifted by the welcome presence of a tepid, soggy, previously frozen (and decidedly 1970s) McCain’s French bread pizza nestling amongst the otherwise tawdry post-crematorium buffet. But what about the ultimate challenge: can pizza give much-needed open heart surgery to an item of light entertainment starring Michael Keaton?

I obliquely refer to Mr Mom, a family movie that has offended every atom of man’s being since it was spawned in 1983. Bulimic, vanilla, toe-curlingly predictable and up there with enforced gang rape as a way of whiling away a winter’s eve – or so you’d think. You know the deal – high-flyer loses his job and becomes a stay-at-home dad, missus goes back to work, all kinds of domesticated/scatological high-jinx ensues, yada yada yada. I fully expected to abjectly hate it – but, with the addition of piping hot pizza and a good glass of claret, didn’t. In fact, as a fully-bearded, bungling Keaton became addicted to daytime soap operas and threw a wives-only poker school, all the time popping those yummy old cans of Bud with the proper ring pulls, smoking heavily and chewing endless, blatantly product-placed Dominos – for this is a great pizza movie in every sense – I found myself seeing a little of me in him. More, I genuinely liked the guy.

When Keaton was attacked by a runaway vacuum cleaner to the Jaws theme, then played out a slo-mo pastiche of Chariots Of Fire at the wife’s boss’s sports day, me and the missus were thoroughly hooked. And when his errant washing machine “attacked” the cable guy, we concurred that we enjoyed Mr Mom ten times more than the previous night’s flick, the Oscar-nominated yet frankly cancerous The Tree Of Life starring pompous arse trumpet Brad Pitt.

So, to the pizza. Inspired by Pete and Rosie’s “keep it local” sentiment [editor’s note – Rosie and myself don’t actually have one of these at all, we would much rather order from Papa John’s or Dominos and have done with it, as we are essentially simple folk, albeit two very attractive ones], I worriedly eschewed my usual no-brainer Dominos Chicken Combo Meal and ventured 100 worrisome yards to Pizza Pan in East Dulwich. Ordinarily, PP’s chances of luring passing custom is mortally wounded from being nestled betwixt a fragrantly odorous curry house called Gandhi’s – the name itself is usually enough to tempt the comedy drunk in out of the cold, unforgiving SE22 night – and the Yee Wah, a great, cheap, deliciously dirty Chinese.

But duty beckoned, and PP does benefit from being opposite The Clock House, an inoffensive Young’s boozer that keeps good keg ale. You give the PP boys your mobile number, then swig a pint of Ordinary while you clasp your blower and feverishly await their “Mr Martin, pizza, it is ready” call. Surely, this is technology at its finest. Being a Monday, the PP boys threw in some free spicy chicken wings…

Free wings! FREE WINGS!

…Microwaved to the point of nearly setting fire, anaemic and worthy of weird Latin nomenclature, they were greasy, translucent and unremittingly awful. More rattus rattus then peri peri, they looked strangely mummified, and might have appealed if your name was Baldrick, or you were on death row. They were angrily slam-dunked into the trash afore the opening credits of Mr Mom had even rolled. Tragically, PP’s wings were worse than Paul McCartney’s – and about as welcome as finding a human stool in your bread bin the day after you’ve been burgled.

But what pizza to go with this flick? Erroneously but amusingly figuring Michael Keaton is probably of Italian descent, I opted for the Milano (that’s actually the very pizza in the above picture), which was basically a work experience meat feast, lathered in those strange, frozen veggies that obviously come from a cavernous sack from Iceland. The “Italian crust” was halfway between a thin and medium crust, and was chewy to the point of needing a good tug of the head to bite a slice in half.

It was genuinely an insult to the pizza kingdom, and, at £18 for uno Milano and a margherita for the missus, it was the best advert in Christendom for having Dominos on your speed-dial. Like unfulfilling sex with a semi-drunk ex, it lacked substance, left me feeling strangely empty, and, the next morning as the sad, greasy box haunted me of my foul error, I caught sight of myself in the fridge door and made a hopeful, silent promise to never, ever stray again.

THE VERDICT

THE FILM: Amazingly, I’m giving it a 7.5 out of ten. Say what you like about Keaton, he’s a pro, and the big-bucks Aaron Spelling production values polished this turd to a mirror finish.

THE PIZZA: Maximum 4/10, and the sides were inedible. Lousy pizza, decent family flick. Life, huh? Ain’t it full of surprises?

Martin perpetually has a lovely bunch of coconuts

Filed under: Guest drops, Movie And A Pizza

Rakin’ In The Dough: Battle rappers select their favourite pizzas

 

Three bona fide battle rap legends

I like pizzas. I don’t think there’s any secret of that. I also like battle rap, which I am slightly more secretive about because, well, I’m 38 years old and I should be into stuff like farmers’ markets (actually, that’s a bad example, I fucking love farmers’ markets) and pub quizzes (man, this isn’t going well AT ALL). Well, tough beans, I love battle rap, specifically of the type served up by my nuckas at the Don’t Flop battle league, many of whom I am now unfortunate enough to call my friends, even though they are a bunch of thugs and reprobates. Well, we’ve already asked a bunch of glamour models what kind of pizza is their favourite, so now it’s time for the Don’t Flop MCs to talk pizza with you, the eagerly-awaiting public, starting with an all-time great…

Pamflit. “Tops Pizza seafood, because the mozzerella is so sloppy you don’t need to rinse a bottle of Coke to digest the thing.”

Pamflit: camp as tents

Sigourney Phizzle. “Dominos Mighty Meaty with BBQ sauce base instead of tomato and bare jalapenos all over it.”

Sigourney Phizzle: glamorous

Cruger. “Dominos Texas BBQ. It’s tasty and I like dipping the crust in them little garlic sauce pots.”

Cruger: Will not be happy with me about the picture selection

Prince Kong. “It’s all about the thin-based pepperoni, winner all day, from Pizza Hut, or Dominos if it’s Tuesday because you get two.” PETE’S NOTE: BIG UP ALL AT RUM COMMITTEE

Prince Kong: Has a nice smile

JokerStarr. “Herbie’s Pizza, thin crust, BBQ Chicken. Because there ain’t no GAWD-damn pork on it! They are the gods of the pizza world.”

JokerStarr: Big forearms

The Calcium Kid. “Papa Pizza of Birkenhead’s 17″ extra cheese and extra chorizo. That’s my final answer and it has been given 15 minutes thought. And two pints of semi skimmed milk”

The Calcium Kid: Slept on my sofa once, uninvited

Tony D*Poison. “Dominos vegetarian, because I’ve got enough beef on the road, yazimi?”

Tony D: Knows what the word "yazimi" means

Sprungy. “The Mexican from Dominos. Definitely thin crust, fuck deep pan. I just like the spicy shit, pepperoni, peppers etc, it’s good times. The only time I really eat pizza is when I’m pissed. Spicy lamb and spicy chicken with jalapenos and green peppers.”

Sprungy: Sprungy

Stowaway. “The best pizza I ever had was at Zero Degrees: caramelised pear, gorgonzola and walnut. It was so good I nearly had a little cry.”

Stowaway: Once slept on my floor, invited

Mos Prob. “It’s all about the Meateor from Dominos. It’s like eating a bison covered in cheese and tomato sauce. And we all know bisons are pricks.”

Mos Prob: Harrowing

At this point, Stowaway (“bisons just need to fuck off and stay the hell out of my affairs”), JokerStarr (“especially M Bison from Street Fighter 2”) and Sprungy (“I have the guile to beat a bison”) take the topic slightly off track. We’ll be right back shortly.

Impact. “Dominos Florentine pizza is my favourite pizza on the road right about now. Most veggie pizzas are just boring, with the Florentine they actually tried to be different and add some decent toppings rather than just bang on any old vegetable.”

Impact: owns his own spotlights

Eurgh. “Spicy Beef, because it’s spicy, and has beef.”

Eurgh: Mobile eyebrows

JC. “Parma Ham, Rucula and buffolo Mozarella, wherever I can take it. Dominos-wise, I take the Meat Feast.”

JC: German, yet more handsome and better at rapping than you or anyone you know

Chris Leese. “Dominos, half Tandoori Hot, half Vegetarian Supreme with ham. Three garlic and herb dips, three hot sauce, Chicken Dippers and a bottle of Coke.”

Chris Leese: Has a pint glass for a face

Bowski. “Pepperoni Passion from Dominos or spicy beef and pepperoni pizza from a takeaway in Didsbury, Manchester, called Continental Pizza. All night long!”

Bowski: Is on the left, also a legend

Micky Worthless. “As long as it’s Papa John’s it can have any toppings. No seafood though. Eurgh might be down to ruin a pizza with anchovies but not me.”

Micky Worthless: Quite simply the greatest man who ever lived

My thanks to the good people of Don’t Flop for many, many entertaining hours. I may be a drunk old twat, but I am YOUR drunk old twat. And here, at about 10:36, is where it more or less all began

Filed under: Uncategorized

Guest blog! Jon Horsley of TV Bite on why one (topping) is the magic number

Pete says: It’s a great pleasure to this week welcome a guest drop from Jon Horsley, the main man behind TV Bite, yet another vastly superior endeavour to my own combining televisual recommendations with recipes. He once took a pop at me for defending Two Pints A Lager And A Packet Of Crisps but we cool now. Jon here elucidates his philosophical support of the one-topping pizza…

"NO!" says Jon. "TOO MANY TOPPINGS BY FAR!"

I believe it was in popular satirical tome The Mary Whitehouse Experience Encyclopedia where I first saw pizza described as “Posh cheese on toast”*.  Perhaps some of you pizza lovers will bristle at this reductive description, but think on, for cheese on toast it surely is. Pizza is literally based on toast, yes. But what toast! What ambrosial, life-giving cooked baked goods this is. Bouncy, chewy, crunch and charred on the edge**. Fuck you Communion, this is the bread of life. If the pleasure gained from food is one of the things that lifts us above the beasts – animals feed, people eat – then chewing the bread of pizza is to chew on the very essence of human achievement.

Bread is the crucial part of the pizza. It is the foundation from which the meal grows. In existential terms, it is the “being” from Sartre’s Being and Nothingness. We only know it is a pizza because of the bread. Without it, what do we have? An extremely low quality pasta sauce. And if we wanted that, we’d go to a student dinner party, or if you can’t bear the kind of arsehole student who has dinner parties, go to Garfunkel’s and have a salad bar too. The point is, you must focus, when you choose a pizza, on the bread.

Almost certainly the only time Jean-Paul Sartre will appear in this blog

So, we’re agreed. We need bread. What comes next is cheese and tomatoes. This is accepted fact (apart from some marinaras and the odd blanco). We need no more discussion on this. Pizza has evolved to this point after centuries of experimentation, so who are you to say different? You’re no one, that’s who. Shut up. Bread, cheese and tomatoes, the holy trinity of pizza.  Bread, cheese and tomatoes. What next? Here we come to the crux of my post***. Pizza should only have one topping. ONE TOPPING. I say from here on, the blessed pizza eater requires one further ingredient.  One. Un. Uno. Eck. Yi.

This ingredient is the focus. It needs space to breathe. I pass onto you what my grandfather said on his deathbed: “Do not swamp your holy trinity with a meat feast.” Do not adhere frozen vegetables over the base. This is a heinous, horrible mistake. What you must learn is the topping is the icing on the cake, it is not the cake itself. By taking this Buddhist approach to toppings, your meal, nay your life, will become clearer. You will appreciate the bread, cheese and tomatoes so much more. And what of the extra component itself? With room on top, it really breathes. No longer does the humble mushroom exist solely for the purpose of fun guy/funghi or “mushroom/muchroom” hilarity. It’s an earthy partner to the other trio. The anchovy that gave its life to your mouth becomes more than salt. It becomes a small, delicate fish.

Wow, there's not "mushroom" here, is there?

In the words of Spinoza, a philosopher who knew more than a little about pizza****: “The man who overblings his pizza is like the man who really enjoys going to Ikea – a confused cock. Whatsa matter you, eh?” Think of it in terms of great art: How many cock and balls did Michaelangelo sculpt on David? How many Lisas are there depicted in the Mona Lisa? How many heroes in Die Hard? How many lead guitarists in Appetite For Destruction-era Guns N Roses? The answer to these questions is the answer to your topping dilemma. Now, go safely – and go simply.

Likewise, the only time Michaelangelo's David will appear in this blog

AUTHOR’S NOTES

* If I recall correctly it was David Baddiel’s entry. The entries were initialled, for some reason and if I recall correctly, this was one of David Baddiel’s though I could be making that up because it’s very much in his “mildly funny in the pub” voice.

** Here I differ from another correspondent on this blog, Rosie***** and her assertion that dirty pizza is the thing you want at home. Dirty pizza is disgusting. Papa John’s is pizza designed and made by people who have read a facsimile of what a pizza is, Dominos is plastic on cardboard and Tops is sick on cardboard.

*** Yes, it’s taken a while. And yes, I did footnotes before I read that Stewart Lee book.

**** Not Baruch Spinoza. Turns out he’s not Italian, he’s Portuguese, so is your go-to guy on bacalao. This is the lesser know, made up philosopher Giuseppe Spinoza.

*****Actually, on this issue I probably disagree with everyone on this blog and everyone reading it. I like the look of Pete And Rosie’s deep dish pizza – but it’s clearly a pie. I am the Hyacinth Bucket of takeaway pizza.

Jon smiled slightly, safe in the knowledge that he was far better than the man whose blog he had just graced

 

Filed under: Guest drops

An early Christmas miracle spuriously related to pizza in a small way

Last night, after a not especially good day that had followed a decidedly iffy weekend which itself acted as bookend to a positively awful end of the week, I headed to East Dulwich to join an old friend for a couple of drinks and discuss various projects on which we were (by which I mean “he was”) currently working. I decided to head there early and while away half an hour playing on the pub quiz machine in The Vale bar, as, in these troubled times, few things give me greater pleasure than enjoying a few cracks at the jackpot on Secret Letter, which for the uninitiated is basically a word game seemingly created specifically so that those of us of an anagrammatical bent can milk it for beer money.

A pub quiz machine, yesterday

The problem is that Secret Letter is so easy, its £10 jackpot so eminently achievable, that it tends to get rotated out of the active games selection (because that’s what happens nowadays – if a game is proving to be too lucrative for punters, it gets removed from the playlist automatically by the machine. The swines!) before you get a chance to have a crack at it. Well, I can tell you that Secret Letter was still very much an available option on the quiz machine in The Vale, the £10 jackpot was still available (there is NOTHING worse than getting onto Secret Letter and finding out that the jackpot has gone done to £1, nothing on Earth) and that, most perplexingly and magnificently of all, there was an inexplicable £5.50 of credit in the machine.

Dear pizza blog reader, I do not know who left that credit in there, nor why, nor when. I can merely inform you that in my first game of Secret Letter, I won the £10 jackpot, followed by a £1 runners-up prize, followed by the £10 jackpot a second time. I then followed this up with £1 from Match Of The Day: The Road To Glory and then another £4 from Deal Or No Deal. Which meant that, when I went skipping out into the night, I had made £26 on an investment of absolutely nothing whatsoever, and I was, for some reason, no longer in a bad mood.

So what relevance has this in relation to pizza? Well, simply that I then went and spunked a good deal of that £26 on Rioja in The Gowlett, a fantastic little gem of a pub on the SE22 / SE15 borders which happens to do as good a selection of pub pizzas as you’re going to find anywhere in south London. And, just as I was arriving, I got a text from the missus asking if we could get a Christmas tree for the flat next week. Well, how could I possibly refuse? I had, after all, just been party to a tiny miracle, and better yet, one involving a pub quiz machine, the best kind of miracle of them all.

A Gowlett pizza - you can see more of his ilk by clicking here

Up next: Jon Horsley, creator of the brilliant tvbite.com on Zen and the art of pizza topping. Stay tuned…

Filed under: Uncategorized

Guest blog! Rosie Mullender on the joys of reheated pizza!

Pete says: Hi there! Pete here. One thing I am fond of doing is giving this blog over to writers who are better than I am, like my other half, the esteemed Rosemary Q. Mullender of Billericay, London England. In addition to being vastly my superior, she is also very patient when I behave like a dick too (last night, for example). And here she is now, explaining to you why pizza doesn’t have to be for the night, it can be for the next morning too. Take it away, Good Lady Wife…

Now doesn't that look fancy?

One of my longest-running rows with Mr Mullies, the owner of this illustrious blog, is that he has absolutely no respect for leftover pizza. Place a greasy box of fresh, hot pizza in front of him and he’ll treat it like the tenderest lover: gently plucking a slice from the box, smearing it with unctuous dip then groaning with pleasure as it slides down his gullet. But once he has had his fill and the pizza’s gone cold, he loses interest, leaving the leftovers to roll its eyes and sort itself out while he falls asleep in front of the telly.

It takes a few seconds to put some pizza on a plate and bung it in a fridge. It’s even quicker not to throw out dips that could be used next time Papa John’s forgets them. But Pete just doesn’t see the point of either of these things.

The morning after a pizza binge, I wake up, lick my lips at the thought of a slice of reheated pizza, and run to the kitchen. Then, like the little boy in The Snowman, I’m brought to my knees when I see my pizza, strewn with bacteria-riddled chicken, shrivelled up on the kitchen counter. In this very blog, in fact, Pete describes chucking out half a medium Dominos pizza BECAUSE IT’S GOT MEATBALLS ON IT AND CAN’T BE REHEATED. Like they’re glued on with that stuff in that advert with that man stuck to that aeroplane and can’t simply be plucked off.

Chances are, you’ve had some pretty rotten reheated pizza, and agree that it’s best to just bin it. Which seems crazy to me: half a large takeaway pizza is worth up to £9, and men – who, let’s face it, are the main consumers of pizza – will happily eat month-out-of-date sausages because “they’re the posh ones with bits in.” But if you treat leftover pizza right – seeing to its needs once your own have been satisfied – you can have a delicious meal in minutes. The trick is as follows:

1. When you’ve had your fill, wrap what’s left on a plate in clingfilm and bung it in the fridge. You shouldn’t need to save the dip – after all, you have spares, right?

2. The next day (or even three days later, the longest meat-pizza leftovers will safely keep), congratulate yourself on how clever you are, whack the oven up high, and take the pizza off the plate, allowing it to warm up to room temperature.

3. STOP LOOKING AT THE MICROWAVE. It is not your friend. Ditto the grill or toaster.

3. Put one slice of pizza per person on a middle shelf. Keep your eye on it, and when the crust starts to brown, tuck some foil around it. This will allow the cheese and meat to heat properly without the crust burning.

4. When the cheese is bubbling, pull your pizza off the rack, slide another slice on, and eat your pizza standing nonchalantly at the kitchen counter, possibly swigging from a bottle of Stella Cidre because that’s just the kind of guy you are.

5. Repeat step 4 until everything is gone. Yummers!

Of course, you can always eat your pizza cold, which is also nice, as long as you let it warm up a bit first – otherwise it’s way too chewy. Or, if you made your own pizza instead of ordering in, you can make the magnificent breakfast pizza with the leftovers. Bon appétit!

The author with two of her many celebrity lovers

 

Filed under: Guest drops

11 Quite Interesting Facts About Pizza

Good evening, good evening, good evening, good evening, good evening, good evening, good evening!

The United States Congress decrees that the tomato sauce used on pizzas in US schools counts as a vegetable, and thus count towards the children’s five servings a day.

Kid, you are FAT

John Schnatter, aka Papa John, financed the purchasing of his first pizza restaurant by selling his car.

The greatest man who ever lived

The first Kevlar body armour was manufactured Richard Davis, a US Marine-turned-pizza store owner who came up with the idea after he was shot in an armed robbery at his store.

I own three of these

In Krakow in 2010, chefs constructed a pizza that was one kilometre in length, using three and a half tonnes of flour.

Still not big enough

The ancient Romans used to eat a pizza-style dish called a Placenta.

It's good, but it's not a Meatylicious

Brazil consumes 1.4 million pizzas every day.

Gratuitous Brazilian carnival girl shot

In 2007, chef Domenico Crolla prepared a pizza costing £2,150, topped with edible gold and champagne-soaked caviar.

It's good but it's not a Meatylicious. Again.

Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba in Naples, Italy, is widely held to be the world’s first pizzeria. It opened in 1738, and allowed customers to pay up to eight days after their pizza. Are you listening, Dominos?

Ooh, looks fancy!

The three dots on the Dominos logo represent the chain’s first three stores.

One... Two... Three! See?

Some of the pizza flavours included in the animated Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series included peanut butter and clams, pepperoni and hot fudge, and guacamole and marshmallow.

I always hated this programme, and I suspect I still do

BONUS FACT: My friend Helen says that pizza is not interesting but this list proves she is wrong.

Here She Drinks

Filed under: Uncategorized

Movie And A Pizza #3: Deadheads, and a Dominos Stuffed Crust with chicken and meatballs

I have a confession to make: I am cheating with this week’s Movie And A Pizza. The two things did not happen on the same evening, I consumed the pizza under review during the England matchon Tuesday,  after my first solo attempt at a Chicago style deep dish pizza ended in disaster (the chilli flakes bag burst just as I was sprinkling them onto the chicken and rendered the otherwise-faultless pizza inedible) and last night I just had a sandwich to accompany the film. That said, the sandwich had mozzerella in it so I don’t feel like I was completely betraying you. And it was toasted as well so it was basically a pizza in all but name.

So, to business. The film I opted to watch last night was Deadheads. Now, anyone who knows me knows that I love a zombie film – indeed, even as I type, I am wearing a Doctor Butcher MD T-shirt, and horror fans everywhere will know that goes by the alternative title Zombie Holocaust. And T-shirts don’t lie. Anyway, Deadheads is a zombie comedy, which means I should hate it (Shaun Of The Dead – great idea, not especially funny) because the living dead are no laughing matter. But I have to admit that I loved Deadheads. Basically, it asks the question, “What if a small portion of the living dead actually carried on behaving like normal human beings? What then? Eh?” The answer being, “well, in the case of Mike, the main character in Deadheads, what would happen is that he would set out on a road trip with another coherent zombie called Brent and attempt to find his girlfriend, all the while attempting to avoid being killed by humans who think that they are going to eat their faces.” The resultant hokum is extremely entertaining, as our two heroes attempt to hitch their way across America while concealing from the humans upon whom they happen, that they are visibly decomposing. There’s an extremely funny scene where they find themselves barricaded inside a building with a group of humans fighting off the undead and a precocious child realises that they are actually zombies too, and the two leads – Mike the anguished romantic, Brent the gobby hipster – make for a likeable pairing. And, perhaps recognising that the best bit in Shaun Of The Dead is the bit when Dylan Moran has his guts ripped out, it doesn’t stint on the gore either. Oddly, there are only two quotes on the film’s iMDB page and one of them is, “can you pass me a map?” which doesn’t strike me as a particularly memorable line. Even so, I give whatever my equivalent of “two thumbs up” happens to be.

This is not the man who delivered my pizza

Aaaaaand so we turn to the pizza, which accompanied the sight of England grunting to a dishwater-dull 1-0 win over Sweden. I opted for the classic medium Stuffed Crust from Dominos, this time with chicken strips (they really are running the chicken topping game right now) and meatballs. Big mistake. Say what you like about meatballs on a pizza (like, for example, “I like meatballs on a pizza” or “no meatballs for me, thank you”) but they don’t half add heft to a serving, and not in a good way. They have a tapas-like habit of filling you up when you’re not actually full, and so it proved with my pizza, half of which went uneaten, and remained so, meatballs being a less-than-ideal topping for breakfast reheating. The stuffed crust seemed a little on the ungenerous side too. Maybe I just wasn’t in the pizza frame of mind. It happens. I didn’t even get to take a photo of it because I had left my phone at work.

THE VERDICT

THE FILM: I’m giving Deadheads a gore-drenched 9/10 (starting to sound like Jonathan Ross now) and a ringing 12 Inch Pete Treat endorsement. You can follow one of the directors here

THE PIZZA: I can only give it 5/10, but I blame the presence of John Terry on my TV screen for this. And those pesky meatballs. I think I am going to give up meatballs, unless they are home-made. You heard it here first, pizza blog fans throughout the world!

Filed under: Movie And A Pizza

Chicago deep dish pizza revisited, and this time it’s a resounding success!

12 Inch Pete Treat’s army of followers will already know that Rosie and I have had one crack at a Chicago-style deep dish pizza once before, and it was simultaneously a) awesome and b) a failure, because we did it on the wrong temperature and the lid burst. So, this weekend, we decided we’d have another crack at it. And so we did. And it was fricking INCREDIBLE.

I won’t bore you with the details of the insane concoction of meat that we spooned into it, how we judged the browning of the cheese to perfection, or how I giggled like a mischievous schoolboy as I stuffed the first mouthful into my waterfalling maw. Instead, let us go straight to the traditional stage-by-stage preparation process, so we can speed to the money shot.

Stage 1: balls!

Stage 1: Preperation of our main filling – pork meatballs with crushed fennel and chilli, with some crisped pancetta rashers thrown in for good measure. Meatballs are like God’s testes.

Stage 2: saucy!

Step 2: The sauce. We broke the mould here, by using some puréed tomatoes. Yeah, we like to think outside of the box.

Stage 3: dough!

Step 3: Okay, your dough is done, so we take our exciting new springform pan, which is nine inches wide and has quite low sides, and line the bottom with dough, leaving plenty of overhang.

Stage 4: you put your first cheese in

Step 4: A nice, vaguely-but-not-too-generous layer of grated mozzerella.

Stage 5: it's all meat from here on in

Step 5: It’s meat time. First up we have our chums Mr Chorizo and Mr Cracked Pepper Salami…

Stage 6: get your balls out

Step 6: …And then in go our old friends, you met them earlier, Messrs Meatballs and Pancetta. Hi guys!

Stage 7: Quorn not pictured

Step 7: And then some more chorizo and salami, because WHY THE FRIG NOT?

Stage 8: wake up, time to pie

Step 8: Okay, then you add another layer of dough to seal it all in, trim off the majority of the overhang from the pan, and then roll the remaining overhang inwards to form a crust. Make sure you poke lots of prick-holes (snigger!) into the top crust as that baby’s going to steam up inside.

Stage 9: spoon on the red stuff

Step 9: Remember that tomato sauce we mentioned earlier? Now it’s his time to shine!

Stage 10: Parmesan cheese, if you please

Step 10: Parmesan gratings! Get your ass over here!

Stage 11: A-wella-wella-wella Mozzerella

Step 11: Buffalo Mozzerella, what the dangnabbitting hell are you waiting for? Get in there!

Stage 12: here's one we made recently

Step 12: Oops, bit of a leap there! Okay, after 40-45 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 190 centigrade, you should be faced with something that looks not unlike this…

Stage 13: perfection is unveiled

Step 13: …Then when you pop the springform pan off it looks like this…

Stage 14: slicing the pie

Step 14: … And then you carve off a slice and you get this! Note the meatball peeking coyly out from within, begging to be nibbled! Oh meatball, you are so NAUGHTY!

And finally... There were no survivors.

Step 15: Half an hour later, you should be left with a pizza that looks like this. And yes, that is a pot of Papa John’s garlic dip that we purchased specifically to eat with our pizza. WE WENT OUT TO PAPA JOHN’S AND BOUGHT DIPS. If that makes us bad people, then so be it.

Filed under: Uncategorized

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