Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Tasty Tuesday: Tortilla Pizza

Once upon a time, I was in college. So was my Very Excellent Boyfriend. We went to the same school (it's where we met), and we were in the same program (how we met). He was a year older than me, and was therefore much wiser and handsomer (wait, no, I'm not handsome at all - I HOPE). 

We didn't know each other well at first. In fact, we barely knew each other at all. We had lots of mutual friends, but we didn't really spend much time together. He was very quiet, and I mostly hung around with the girls in my class. But every now and then, we ladies would go over to the apartment he shared with three friends. One night, while playing cards at their kitchen table, Future Very Excellent Boyfriend got hungry and made himself a tortilla pizza. 

In retrospect, that's when I started to fall in love with him. 

I know you're not very impressed. "Everybody makes those - WHO CARES? Microwave a tortilla with cheese, and WHAM, done." But this is about style, execution; what I learned that night is that Very Excellent Boyfriend does not half-ass anything. If he's making a tortilla pizza, it will be amazing

Since we started dating (four years ago, WHAT??) the tortilla pizza has become a snacktime staple. And a dinnertime staple. I love these guys - they're simple, delicious, and go great with a beer. 

Most things do.
Sometimes, I want one more than I want to order Papa John's. Since they boast a third of the calories, that's probably a good thing. 

  • Large flour tortillas (You could use corn ones, if you want this to taste terrible)
  • 1/4 tablespoon butter, room temperature
  • Red sauce with butter and onion (You can use whatever red sauce you want, I guess, but this stuff is like crack, and you know it.)
  • Fresh mozarella
  • Fresh grated parmesean cheese
  • Other salty cheeses - pecarino romano is great
  • Fresh basil (if you have it), dried if you don't
  • Dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, dried thyme, even dried rosemary!
  • Pepperoni, prosciutto, ham, bacon - whatever toppings you want

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Spread the butter on the bottom of the tortilla. That way, when you heat it up, the bottom will get all delicious and crispy and brown.
  • Flip the tortilla over. Yeah, some of the butter may get on your cutting board, but you'll get over it.
  • Cover the tortilla with tomato sauce - you want a nice layer, but not too think. Too much, and you'll rip the tortilla. Leave about 3/4 of an inch of space empty around the outside. This is the "crust."
  • Sprinkle some cheese over the top. If you're short on cash, only use mozarella. But if you can, mix it up and use a few cheeses; your tastebuds will thank you.
  • Fresh basil is just about the best thing on earth. Shred a few leaves and sprinkle them over the cheese.
  • Now, add other toppings. Pepperoni is my favorite, but we've made these with proscuitto, bacon, and other meats. You can also slice up some tomato for a Margarita pizza. 
  • Now that your pizza is topped and the oven is warm, put the pizza directly onto a rack in the middle of the oven. This step is a bit delicate - make sure the ends of the tortilla aren't drooping in midair. This is why it's good to leave empty space around the edges - it keeps toppings from sliding off. 
  • Bake for 10 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown and the cheese is melted. 
  • Carefully slide the pizza onto a plate or large cutting board. Slice into triangles and scarf.
  • Watch Don't Trust the B*** in Apartment 23 and weep for its cancellation. 
Keep in mind that one pizza serves one Galen, and I have a smallish appetite. Boyfriend usually eats one and a half, or one with a large salad. 

The finished product -  I forgot to take a picture before I started slicing.
Anyone can slap some sauce on a tortilla and call it a pizza, but my Very Excelent Boyfriend does not cut corners. It's one of the many reasons I love him. And his food. 

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