Monday, May 25, 2009

Pizza and the past

I made a pizza today that was just ridiculously delicious: fresh campari tomatoes (these are small, super sweet tomatoes), olive oil, fresh mozz and spices. It was with pride that I told my dad earlier this afternoon about it, along with some of the other pizzas I made and how much I loved making them. He asked me how I learned to make pizza.

"I don't know," I tell him. "which is really odd as when I watched a cooking show on making pizza recently, everything the chef did I already knew how to do but I can't remember learning how."

"I know how," he says. "You used to make pizzas as a kid."

"What???"

He goes on to tell me that my mom used to bake all the time and that I learned from her and I used to make it from scratch. Problem is, I have no memory of this. The reason I have no memory, he says, is because one time he came home when I was making pizza and I was covered in flour and the kitchen was all covered in flour and he "did what he was best at," which means he yelled and scared the crap out of me.

Memory is a funny thing. I take it for granted that I have a good childhood memory. My mom's memory stinks and I'm constantly having to hear how she has zero memory of what I consider really significant childhood events so it threw me to not remember that my mom baked and that I used to make pizza. Come on, I clearly remember making them meatloaf, peas and mashed potatoes after watching Nathalie Dupree on PBS, so how could I forget something even more important to me, like my humble beginnings making one of my favorite foods?

Then when I was in the shower tonight, something surfaced: a clear pyrex bowl, a fork tossing flour with specks of oregano, a crust formed by lifting and pinching. A badly formed, salty, crunchy crust that often broke off.

I'm always remembering things in the shower. And, OMG have I come a long way from that pizza! :)