Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Cooking Test: Stove-Top Pizza

Although not involving any delicious offal, today has produced yet another cooking adventure!

Specifically, the pilot light is out on my oven. And the diagram on the back of the stove is absolutely no help in figuring it out, which means I'm going to have to find a user's manual for this stove somewhere online. And given that I'm renting from a slumlord and the oven is approximately 17 years older than Christ, I'm not certain I'll have much luck with that.

But the stove top still works! And I forgot to go grocery shopping yesterday and am hungry now with only a frozen pizza to my name. But hey, ain't no rule sez you can't make a pizza not in the oven.

So join me, won't you, as we endeavor to make ourselves a frozen pizza without the aid of an oven.

First, I figure it's best to use a non-stick pan. Don't want my pizza sticking to that pan. It's also my larger pan, which turns out to be a fortunate coincidence, as the pizza just barely fits in there.

Pizza pie in a pan? Mamma mia!
So it fits, which I feel is already winning an important battle. Especially because I had already unwrapped the pizza from it's protective plastic womb, and I didn't want to have to put it back in the freezer and get all freezer burned. This is one of those hippie frozen pizzas that's way more expensive than the regular shit. You don't go around wasting a pizza like that.

Anyway, I put some olive oil in the pan to prevent sticking, and figure a low temperature is probably the way to go.
Kind of an oven
Then I figure to make it more oven-y, I should find something with which to cover the pan. Since this particular pan doesn't have a lid, a cookie sheet will have to do. Maybe it will even be better, as by not tightly fitting on there, it can let steam escape, giving me a less-soggy pizza. Or maybe not. This isn't really a very scientific process here.

It doesn't look much better not blurry
 It's about this point in time in which I realize I neither set a timer nor bothered to pay attention as to when I started this thing, so we're really getting into a guessing game here. I pull the ol' cookie sheet off to discover the pizza is indeed cooking, but not nearly as quickly as I want it to. How I determine it's not cooking quickly enough is somewhat of a mystery, as I just explained how I was not timing this at all. But it just felt like it should be cooking faster, so I cranked up the heat. This may have been a mistake. Or it may not have made any difference. But a variable to keep in mind for future attempts.

Hey, it's a pizza!
So after waiting awhile longer and then being summoned by the smell of burning, I decide the pizza is as close to ready as it will ever get. And as the picture above can attest, it looks pretty much like a pizza is supposed to look. What you can't see is that the crust is absolutely burned to shit, but when you're making a pizza on the stove top you're firmly in the "beggars can't be choosers" camp, so we'll look past that. And it's not like burnt crust makes it inedible. Just less than ideal. Which is more than acceptable to me. In fact, I feel like that's a pretty good model to strive for in all aspects of life: "Not terrible, just not ideal."

But Was It Any Good?

Eh, for the most part. It's still cheese on sauce on (burnt) crust. I mean, as the old saying goes, even the worst pizza is better than being repeatedly kicked in the crotch. Something like that.

Anyway, stove-top pizza, official verdict: acceptable!

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