On Monday I’m hosting my annual Valentine’s Day “Pizza of My Heart” Party! Ten years ago I came up with this concept and many relationships and homemade pizzas later - it’s grown into an annual celebration with loved ones. Scratch your other VDay plans, grab your favorite toppings, and join me in making a bunch of homemade pies. Any way you slice it, we’re going to have a tasty time!
For starters, Pizza is an incredibly creative and tasty vessel. I like how you can tailor your pizza experience to your comfort zone. You can keep it simple (cheese please!), make it fancy (truffle oil anyone?), or complex (100% from scratch). Not to mention, it’s kid-friendly and accommodates all dietary restrictions (vegan/gluten-free, etc). And the best part is - you get to eat as you go!
In my first year, I used dough from Trader Joe’s and a cookie sheet. We made two pizzas - a classic meat lovers and then a BBQ chicken pizza. The BBQ chicken was the winner. Despite being a funny shape, I used Corky’s BBQ sauce and it turned out SO good. Pro Tip: Use high-quality ingredients to elevate your pizza. Next stop - flavor town! 🍕
Over the years, the R&D team at Chief of Stuff has been pretty busy. Personal favorites include the Brussel sprouts pizza inspired by Martina’s Pizza in NYC (finish with good evoo), Thai Chicken Pizza from California Pizza Kitchen (use peanut butter and sriracha for the sauce), and Broccoli Rabe pizza from SF hotspot Delfina (double down on the garlic). Besides recreating famous pies, there are endless original combos. You can’t go wrong with pesto and artichoke hearts, spicy Italian sausage and red onions, or prosciutto with arugula on top.
The Secret Sauce:
This year, I’m going to be celebrating with my sister Julie, BIL Geoff, and some other friends. We’ll be in the backyard slinging pies in the Ooni Pizza Oven and I’m excited because I love the flavor that woodfired adds. I’ve been collecting ideas all year, and the top contenders are the Cacio e Pepe pie inspired by LA hotspot Pizzana, a French Onion pizza from The Orginal Dish , and this pistachio and honey dessert pizza creation from foodie/comedian Eric Wareheim. Plus we’ll have a bunch of different ingredients on hand to invent some new favorites.
I’m lucky because Geoff is not only a pizza connoisseur but a pizza master. During lockdown, he was inspired to make 100 pizzas, and fortunately for us, he documented his entire delicious journey. Check out his “100 Pizza Project” for great tips, baking tricks, and ‘ZA inspo.
Geoff’s signature pie is the “Hot ‘n Honey” and it’s chef’s kiss - perfection! I’ve specially requested it for Monday’s Menu and thankfully, he shared the ingredients so you can enjoy it as well!
Start by putting hot sauce as the pizza base (Frank’s is a good one), add both fresh mozzarella and shredded low moisture mozzarella, lay slices of Copa (or hot Copa if you’re feeling extra spicy! 🔥) and thinly sliced white onion. Then bake. Finally, finish with a drizzle of your favorite local honey and a little drizzle of hot sauce. Voila! Eat and Enjoy!
Okay, now I’m really craving some pizza and I hope you are too! What are your favorite pizza toppings and combos? How do you feel about pineapple on pizza? What’s the best slice you’ve had recently? I’d love to hear from you and get future “pizza my heart” ideas! 💕
Love you to pizzas!