A GRACE FILLED JOURNEY • Making Memories And Homemade Pizza

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Although I always say that spaghetti is my very favorite food, I would have to say that pizza comes in a close second, very close. And if I'm being totally honest, my favorite is just plain old cheese pizza.

One of the best parts about the dining hall in the dorm building where I lived at Mizzou, is that you could get pizza for lunch and dinner, every single day. And to top it all off, if you had any bonus meals left at the end of the week, you could use two or three meals and get an entire pizza to take back to your dorm room. 

But they had lots of other choices besides pizza. They always had a salad and soup bar, a grill for burgers and hot dogs, a deli for sandwiches, select entrees every day and even a cereal bar. I'm pretty sure that's why when my dad and brother came to visit, they preferred just to eat at the dining hall in my building instead of going out to eat.

And I have to say the food was really pretty good, especially since you could get pizza every single day. At one point, I think my college roommate started to worry about me not eating enough vegetables, and she used to bring back broccoli and put it on my plate at meals. She even awarded gold star stickers for times I picked healthier choices than pizza.

But I have to say, it's always been a favorite of mine. And I can't say that I'm even too picky about where it comes from, just make sure you don't ask my brother. We used to argue about where to get pizza from (in Hillsboro, he liked Pizza Man and I liked Nick's - and neither are available anymore). But my mom used to make us take turns picking the place to order pizza from, even though I'm fairly certain we only did that to annoy the other one, and most likely our parents too.

One of my very favorite things to do was make homemade mini pizzas, using biscuits. My mom would get out a cookie sheet, and we would each get to squish down the biscuit dough, adding pizza sauce, cheese and our favorite toppings. Mine was usually just cheese. But I can still remember having so much fun putting them together and feeling like I was really cooking (some days that's still more cooking than I do)!

When I married Kyle, I quickly found out that one of their family favorites is homemade pizza, especially on Christmas. Kyle's mom uses the Bisquick recipe for biscuits for the dough, adds tomato sauce (specially seasoned by Kyle's brother, Shane) and a variety of toppings. She also used shredded mozzarella cheese, cheddar cheese and parmesan cheese on top. It's definitely become one of my favorites, even if it took a bit of a learning curve the first time we tried to make it ourselves.

The very first time we attempted it, we might have uses too many toppings, which made it hard to cook the pizza all the way through without burning the crust. It ended up okay, but we definitely figured on some adjustments the next time around. I also learned to spread the dough a little thinner for a crisper crust.

Now, we use a large cookie sheet, and I spray the bottom with Pam before carefully spreading out the biscuit dough. Kyle and I keep talking about adding cornmeal to the bottom of the pan for the dough, but neither of us ever remembers to buy that when we are getting ingredients!

We add pizza sauce from a jar, since Kyle's brother isn't around for the special seasoning, and then sausage, pepperoni, green peppers and mushrooms, but only on Kyle's half. Then we add the cheese on top and cook until the cheese starts to brown. It makes a ton of pizza for just two and a half of us (Charley still doesn't eat much besides peanut butter and jelly sandwiches), and the leftovers are great.

Plus, it's a lot of fun to make together. At Kyle's parent's house, a second generation is now in on the making of the pizza, and it's fun to watch our young nephews helping out and giggling the entire time.

I have to say that pizza will probably always be a family favorite in my house, but I love when we have a chance to make memories together while we make great food.

Homemade Pizza

Ingredients for Crust

2 1/4 cups Bisquick mix

2/3 cup of milk

Pizza sauce

Toppings of choice

Shredded mozzarella cheese

Shredded cheddar cheese

Parmesan cheese

Stir pizza dough ingredients together, and then spread thin on a large, greased cookie sheet. Add pizza sauce, toppings and cheese. Bake in a 350-degree oven for 30 to 45 minutes. I tend to watch around the 30-minute mark and take it out before the cheese burns.

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