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Recently, sam2fish started a post in the PCLinuxOS forum, asking members to post about their favorite pizza joint. There are probably as many ideas about what makes the ideal or best pizza as there are pizza lovers.

Of course, I replied about our (mine and my wife's) favorite pizza shop in the Kansas City area. Leo's Pizza (Leo died several years ago, but the place has been kept going by his family) makes what some call St. Louis style pizza. This pizza has a thin, crispy cracker-style crust (no large rim of flavorless, bready crust around the edge), ingredients all the way to the edge, and uses a special, custom blend of Provel cheese (a processed cheese mix of white cheddar, provolone and swiss cheese) made especially for Leo's.

With young kids in the house, we do pizzas quite a bit. It's a meal that the kids look forward to. My son LOVES pepperoni pizza. My daughter prefers cheese pizza. My wife and I gravitate more towards more "fancy" toppings, like mushrooms, black olives, goat cheese, fennel sausage, onions, green peppers, spinach, etc. You know ... the things you can almost never get kids to eat.

Of course, there's multiple styles of pizza. Chicago has deep dish pizza pies, with a bready crust and PILED with ingredients on the inside, and topped with delicious cheese. Uno's Pizza, Pizzeria Due and Edwardo's Pizza (in Munster, IN, a town where I used to work for a while) are great examples of this style of pizza. Then there's the New York style pizza that's large, floppy, and (to me anyways) seems to be sparsely populated with toppings.

Everyone seems to have a favorite style. And, among those favorite styles, everyone seems to have a favorite pizza maker. Even further, everyone seems to have favorite toppings.

I have to be honest. We like them all. We often order from a budget pizza restaurant (like Little Caesars), or from the bake-at-home takeout fare from Papa Murphy's Pizza (both national chains). We'll order from local pizza restaurants, such as Leo's. But, we're also just as likely to make our own at home. Pizzas are easy to make at home, too.

We've made deep dish pizza pies. We've made "traditional" style pizzas. But lately, we prefer to make very thin, cracker-style crust pizzas. We'd prefer to fill up on the tasty toppings instead of all of that bread. Making the thin crust pizzas couldn't possibly be easier.

At the risk of stealing YouCanToo's "thunder," here's how we make them. Preheat your oven to 450° F (232° C), and place your flat pizza pan in the oven to also preheat. On a large cutting board, build your pizza.

For the crust, we use various sizes of flour tortillas. My sauce is tomato paste, seasoned with dried Italian seasoning (to save time and effort, we buy dried italian seasoning), garlic powder, onion powder, and a touch of sugar. Just season to your preferred taste. Spread a thin layer of the sauce on the tortilla. Then, layer the rest of your toppings. The pizza pictured above has Italian sausage, mushrooms, black olives, and goat cheese, made atop a 10 inch (25.4cm) flour tortilla. Then, top it with your mozzarella cheese. We like to "season" our pizza cheese with some additional dried Italian seasoning. We feel like it helps provide extra flavor, and provides a bit more color.

Now, it's time to bake your pizza. Open the oven door, and carefully slide your pizza from the large cutting board onto the preheated pizza pan. Bake for 10-12 minutes. When it comes out of the oven, your crust should be quite crispy. The key is to make sure the pizza pan is thoroughly preheated along with your oven.

Then, get ready for a custom pizza party in your mouth! The beauty of using flour tortillas as your pizza crust is that you can vary the size to how big of a pizza you want. Do you want to make a large pizza for two to share? Use the extra-large 12 inch (30.5cm) flour tortillas. Do you have a ravenous appetite and don't feel like sharing your pizza creation? Use the large 10 inch (25.4cm) flour tortillas. Do you desire a more slimmed down version, or can't eat as much? Use the 8 inch (20.3cm) flour tortillas.

The added benefit is that everyone gets the pizza they want and like. And, these pizzas are fast and easy to make. The longest part of the entire process is preheating the oven and pizza pan.


This month's cover celebrates the first hot air balloon flight by the Montgolfier brothers in 1783, on June 4.


Until next month, I bid you peace, happiness, serenity, prosperity ... and good pizza!

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