Finally…finally…I have the Chorizo Vodka Pizza recipe for you. I know how longanimous you were trying to be, while your knickers creeped higher and higher. Okay…maybe not, but I do know a few of you have been oh-so-patient waiting for this recipe.
I had every intention of posting it two weeks ago, but the pizza didn’t come out of the oven quite to my satisfaction. Oh, it tasted good, don’t get me wrong! But it had way too much olive oil on it. Looked like Mt. Vesuvius exploded on the pizza, and not in a good way. Must remind myself that to drizzle olive oil is to apply it in sparingly small bits – not guzzles of slick oil. Oops. The pourer poured faster than the pouree expected it to and lo and behold, a not-so-magical, dripping, gooey cheese mess appeared. But since the flavors were delicious, I just had to give it another go.
MUCH more successful results the second time around ‘cause I remembered…drizzle, not pour…less is definitely more. Now that I think about it, it’s a philosophy that I try to live by – no, not drizzle, silly, but less is more. Every year, around this time, I start getting the urge to purge. To start fresh. Anew. To breathe and clear away the cobwebs, detritus, and mounds of matter that has collected in the corners. To begin the new year without the clutter of the old years.
We started with the dining room, hauling away the old, ratty computer desk (Come on, who uses desktops at home, anymore?…I won’t make fun of you if you do…Dinosaur). Already, the room looked three sizes bigger. Then away went the cat tree dust collector, which the cats rarely used (they much prefer the radiators, tables, couches, and humans). OMG. What is that? Not dust bunnies, my friends, but dust rats. Think New York City rats. Between the cat hair and the dust from living, we could have made another cat. I’m sure you’re grateful that we threw it all away, instead. I believe in recycling, but even that would have been a bit much for me.
In comes the wine refrigerator that someone gave us as a gift over 2 years ago. It has sat in the basement all this time, not cooling any wine…still in the box, as a matter of fact. Now we have this delightful little wine corner with all our supplies – glasses, tools, and of course, the wine! And I now have a photograph “studio” where the cat tree used to sit. Lots of natural sunlight and space. It doesn’t mean that my photographs will magically improve over night (oh how I wish my pictures would turn out like Pinch of Yum…one day, my friends, one day….), but it’s definitely an improvement.
Speaking of too much stuff, a 2005 study yielded some eye-opening results: the average family is drowning in clutter. Surprised? I doubt it. They released a book, Life at Home in the Twenty-first Century, with pictures that revealed garages filled to the ceiling with boxes, old toys, lawn equipment, and housewares. In fact, the researchers found that 75% of the houses surveyed had garages so chock-full of stuff, there was no room for a car. Can you guess why we’re addicted to watching Hoarders on TV? It rationalizes our piles of junk. We aren’t THAT bad, so we must be doing okay. Really?
Not only does clutter affect our living space, but it’s been proven that it actually elevates our stress hormone levels. When it comes to dealing with stuff overflow, most of us can admit to giving up. We become so overwhelmed by the chaos, that we feel hopeless at fixing it. Sometimes it feels like that the junk in our closets, garages, and storage rooms multiply when our backs are turned. It’s easier than ever to buy in bulk, or to simply bring home more than intended.
Instead of cowering in front of the mess, challenge yourself to clean it out this month. Start the new year with a clean slate. Learn to slow down and practice conscious consumption by filling your homes with meaningful items that you love. And, maybe, instead of more stuff, choose hearts, minds, and people who care more about YOU than what you have.
**Here’s the pizza dough recipe that I used for this pizza. But any dough you prefer would work just as well.
- 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes with juices
- ¼ cup vodka
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 (1 pound) fresh pizza dough
- Corn meal for dusting
- Olive oil
- 10 ounces low-moisture mozzarella, sliced ½-inch thick
- 10 to 20 small basil leaves
- 4 oz. chorizo, sliced into small pieces
- Heat the oven to 425 degrees F and arrange and a rack in the middle of the oven.
- Heat tomatoes, vodka, and cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until bubbling and vodka smell is cooked off, about 15 minutes. Season, as desired, with salt and freshly ground black pepper and set aside to cool.
- Meanwhile roll pizza dough to a 10-inch round. Dust a light layer of cornmeal on a baking sheet or pizza stone and place dough on top. Pierce the dough in several places to prevent it from bubbling up unevenly. Spread sauce evenly over the dough. Evenly distribute mozzarella across pizza and scatter basil and chorizo on top. Brush edges of pizza lightly with oil and bake until cheese is melted, and underside of dough is golden brown, about 15 minutes.