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4 Different Ways to Enjoy Pizza
Too Much Pizza
At college I lived off of pizza. It was fast and easy to grab, and most likely the safest bet to eat in the dining hall. But sometimes I just get bored with the typical, round dough piled with sauce and cheese. So here are a few ideas to keep the pizza flavor while mixing up the ways in which you make it.
I started making these in college when I discovered that I could find all the pizza ingredients I loved hidden somewhere in the dining hall. And by hidden I mean between the salad bar, sandwich bar, and pasta bar, I could find everything I needed to make a pizza Panini.
There was no mozzarella cheese, just processed Swiss cheese. I didn’t actually think I liked Swiss cheese, but as long as it’s processed enough and doesn’t have holes in it, you can convince yourself it’s just white cheese. And just white cheese works just fine for me on my pizza Panini.
I layered the sides of the bread with cheese, then added pepperoni and black olives, my favorite! Then all I had to do was grill it on the Panini maker (or you can just cook it like a grilled cheese sandwich if you’re not at a fancy school with a Panini maker) and fill a little bowl of sauce from the pasta bar. I dipped the sandwich in the sauce before eating it, and voila! A perfect little imitation pizza.
I had just a tiny bit of leftover pizza sauce and cheese one day, so I decided to make some sort of single serving of pizza with it. And how was I to do that? By making a quesadilla of course!
I discovered I loved black olive and cheddar cheese quesadillas after I got one from the Mexican line at school. So why not make a black olive quesadilla with mozzarella cheese? And pepperoni of course.
Now if for some reason you are not a fan of black olives, just nix them and go with the pepperoni. Or maybe add some sausage, or onions. Whatever floats your boat. This is your lunch, be creative.
When I made this, I put the pizza sauce directly on the quesadilla before cooking it, which works well enough except for resulting in a slightly messier product to eat. In hindsight, I think I would keep it on the side for dipping.
Pizza English Muffin
The Lunchable Alternative: Make Your Own English Muffin Pizza
When I was in elementary school, parents didn’t pack lunch. They handed their child a pre-packed box marked Lunchables. Of course I wanted one too! Not only was the fact that I could make my own pizza cool, the fact that I brought a Lunchable to school would make me cool.
My mom didn’t buy it. Too many preservatives and no fruit. But she came up with an ingenious idea to replace my lack of pre-packed, processed, pizza portions. She made her own Lunchable. She would put half of an English muffin in a sandwich bag. Along with that, she would include separate plastic containers of pizza sauce, cheese, and pepperoni. And a little plastic knife to spread the sauce. Everything I needed to make my own, healthy, and more tasty, pizza.
I find her solution brilliant. I pretty much have the coolest mom ever. Unfortunately, as a second grader, her healthier, tastier option was still not as cool as the box with the Lunchable label on it.
Folks, don’t be a sell-out second grader. Try a make-your-own English muffin pizza! It’s fun and delicious!
The Deep Dish Version: Pizza Bagels
Pretty much an English muffin pizza, but with a thicker crust. So I suppose this would be the “deep dish” version of the mini pizzas. My family always made these when we were together for Christmas. Just make sure you cover the hole with a piece of pepperoni before smothering it in sauce.
I remember how upset I was one Christmas when I was handed what appeared to be a cheese pizza bagel. “But I asked for 1 piece of pepperoni!” I whined. Well…it was there. Just hidden under the sauce and cheese, covering the hole. Basically it’s like a Chicago style pizza.
Deep dish, Chicago style pizza bagels. Yeah, my family is fancy.
What Pizza Recipes Have You Tried?
Try Some for Yourself!
I hope you try these ideas for a little different style of pizza, and let me know what other ways you make pizza that’s not really pizza!