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What's Cooking at GABA: Homemade Pizza

I'm going to have to bring a lot of work home this weekend. However, I'm not going to miss USC's game against the UCF Knights. Without time to cook something elaborate, I need another quick dish to eat while watching the game. My choice this time? A homemade pizza. Love pizza but hate the ripoffs offered by most delivery places and would like to make a perfect, individualized pie? Of course. The best part is that while it's one of those things that you can do a lot with if you have the time, you can make an excellent pizza in only a few minutes. When you think about it, it's really kind of amazing that such a huge industry is built off quick, deliverable pizza when any rube like myself can make a better one faster than he can get in an order in on the phone with Domino's. What's more, pizza is great not just for someone like me who will be in a hurry this weekend, but for someone who's having people over, which is what I wish I was doing. Who doesn't like pizza?

First of all, you need dough, which is the key to any good pizza. I've not tried it yet, but I've heard many times that this Pillsbury premade dough that's sold in the refridgerated goods along with premade biscuit dough and so forth is quite good. If you want to make your own dough, though, it's really not that hard, particularly for thin-crust. This recipe breaks down the technique pretty well. You basically just throw some water, yeast, flour, and salt together, knead, and, when you're ready to cook, flatten the dough. Experienced cooks can throw some together in not much longer than it takes to prepare the premade stuff, and if you make it from scratch, your body will thank you for not consuming all those preservatives. That said, I'm not opposed to using the premade in a pinch. If you'd like to try to make your own pizza but don't have much experience with dough and want to ease your way in, use Pillsbury.

After you've prepped some dough, you get to the fun part--the toppings. The great thing about homemade pizza is the DIY fun of getting to use whatever toppings you want, in whatever ratios you prefer. I'll probably go simple this weekend and just use some pizza sauce (this is something for which I'm definitely not disposed to look down on the premade varieties), cheese, onions, mushrooms, and pepperoni. I'm also a big fan of white pizza, and would recommend this recipe. Takes a little more time to prep, but really good.

Because I'll spend the afternoon after watching the game working, I probably won't enjoy any libations with my pizza. My suggested pairing for red pizza, though, is a Vienna-style lager. Sam Adams Boston Lager is a fantastic choice. The beer is mildly sweet, a nice complement to the acidic pizza sauce. It has enough hops to complement the herbal flavors in the pizza, but not so much that the pizza is overpowered.

Come to think of it, I really love Boston Lager. Not a fan of everything Sam Adams makes, but Boston Lager is a great, very versatile beer.