Ah pizza, so universally adored in all its doughy delicious glory – there is hardly a more versatile food. Looking back over my life so far I am amused to find so many memories of pizzas, I thought I would share some snapshots with you.
Pizza Express, Aged 4
My regular choice at this stage was the La Reigne – no mushrooms, extra olives. I remember being thrilled to find out that this pizza translated as “The Queen” taking it as a sign that I had fantastic taste and was destined for royalty. I would usually follow this up with a Strawberry Bomb dessert which I hated the taste of but loved to order as it was round and very pink.
La Porchetta, Aged 6
A busy, vibrant local restaurant where the pizzas were ginormous. I would stare at the chefs spinning and stretching great wheels of dough in the air. The waiters tended to flirt outrageously with my mother and pay me extra special attention. My favorite visit was when Italy was playing the world cup, they had installed projectors so that the Italian waiters could still watch the game as they served. It was never quiet in La Porchetta but that was the noisiest night ever, the men shouting back and forth in Italian , dramatically cheering or groaning with every twist and turn of the game and generally ignoring the customers.
Zizzis, Aged 12
My tastes at this time had moved up a notch to the Fiorentina, a discerning customer I was furious if they overcooked the egg in the centre. I had managed to injure my neck and couldn’t rotate it in any direction which gave me a very robotic movement style. My family seemed to find this amusing and I did not which resulted in me bursting into tears at the table.
Mamma Mia, Aged 14
Me and a friend went out for what we considered a very grown up dinner on our own after school. This meant turning up in our uniform, sharing a pizza between two and ordering tap water because we had used up all our allowance money buying M&S chocolate mini rolls and Percy Pigs.
University of Manchester, Aged 18-21
I discover mayonnaise with pizza. Is there any greater joy than polishing off a margarita and half a jar of Hellman’s on a hangover?
London, Aged 23
At the moment there is an amazing teeny little pizza restaurant at the top of my road with the wood fired oven taking up most of the floorspace and some really tasty food. Trips have to be strictly rationed or my pizza fiend boyfriend would have us there every weekend!
I would no way go about making pizza at home normally, making and kneading a dough and trying to roll out the perfect round shape sounds bit messy and time consuming for me. This skillet polenta pizza though is so easy, only a few ingredients mixed together and excellent for using up bits and bobs in the fridge as toppings. The polenta gives a light bready consistency with a bit of crunch on the crust and the sweet red onions with softly melting goats cheese, well we all know that combination is a winner!