Friday, November 27, 2020

American Flatbread Uncured Pepperoni & Uncured Bacon

Another of those 50%-off pizzas from the two-week sale Whole Foods offered at the beginning of the month. 

I have noticed American Flatbread pizzas for years but never tried one - never had the inclination to try one, to be honest. Perhaps it's the pretentious name; perhaps just the fact that they look kind of boring. 

But, hey, if I'm not going to try it with a 50% discount, I'm not ever going to try it, right? 

Out of the box, it looked every bit as boring as I expected it to. The bacon was concentrated around the center of the pie. The pepperoni was almost nonexistent. 

The box advertises "fresh herbs." What does that mean when they're on a frozen pizza? That they didn't use dried herbs? Who gives a shit? They're still frozen. 

I cooked it for the recommended amount of time, which caused the cheese to burn. I know some people prefer their pizzas this way. I am not one of them.

As for taste? Not bad. Not good. Flavorless. 

The crust was better than average, though of course with frozen pizza, that is a low bar to clear. 

I would have been very disappointed if I had paid full price for this only to find the meager amount of insipid toppings. 

I ended up sprinkling salt and pepper on top, drizzling it with olive oil, and eating it that way - a kind of vaguely-flavored breadsticks. 

I will not be getting one of these again. I will not be getting any American Flatbread pizzas again, not even at 50% off. 


Friday, November 20, 2020

Whole Foods 365 Rising Crust Pizza (Pepperoni)

As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, Whole Foods had their pizzas on sale for half-price, and I loved their BBQ chicken pizza, so I went back and bought a few more. 

The pepperoni was one of the most attractive I have ever seen out of the box. 

After cooking, it was, without question, the least attractive. They certainly are not joking when they call it "rising crust" - half of it swelled up like a cartoon character's head after being hit with an anvil. 

Ignoring the way it looked, how was the taste? 


It wasn't bad, but it was way too doughy, the flavor of which drowned out everything else. I could not even taste the pepperoni; it might as well have been a cheese pizza. 

I will not be getting this again at half-price. I sure as hell won't be getting it at full price. 

If I am offered one for free... I'd probably say no thanks. 


Friday, November 13, 2020

Trader Joe's Organic Tomato Mozzarella Piccolo (little) Pizza

"It's an authentic Italian pizza, constructed on naturally fermented dough in a wood burning oven in the food loving region of Bologna."

That's what it reads on the box and my memory drifts back to a rainy afternoon in youth that I once spent in the "food loving region of Bologna." 

Wanna know where I ate lunch? 


(And it would not be the last McDonald's meal of the trip.) 

When they say that youth is wasted on the young, this is exactly what they're talking about. 

Anyway, you know my thoughts on Trader Joe's. I love the place. Rarely do I purchase an item I do not like. Even more rare that it is one of their pizzas. 

So I happily tried this one. 

Charmingly, the box instructs you to "cook and serve" - in case you have never before had a frozen pizza and are struggling with the concept - so I cooked it and served it (to myself). 

It's small, but then again it says so right there in the name, so I can't complain. If you have an appetite smaller than mine (odds are, you do) you could probably eat this with a salad for a meal. I would need more. 

I suppose it would be somewhat elegant to cook a couple of these and serve them with wine at a cocktail party, though as I write these words in November of 2020, I would not recommend doing that anytime soon.

The dough is rather dense, resembling stale breadsticks more than great pizza dough. The cheese and sauce are a pleasant combination but there is not enough of it. The tomatoes are inoffensive. This may sound like damning with faint praise, but remember, I do not like tomatoes so this is actually quite a compliment. 

This wasn't bad; it just wasn't particularly good. I'm not sure why Trader Joe's felt the need to create this one. I wish they would have tried something a little more adventurous. 

I do not plan to get this again for myself. However, I hope to one day do my aforementioned idea of serving these with some wine to guests. 

THE RATING: πŸ•πŸ•πŸ•

Friday, November 6, 2020

Red Baron French Bread 3 Meat Pizza

Frozen French bread pizza is one of those remnants of childhood that l loved at the time but, even then, understood I would abandon when I reached adulthood. Professional wrestling, video games, carnivals, laser tag, Full House, comic books... these things were my world back then but I have not experienced any of them in decades, and I am just fine with that. 

I have exactly one memory of eating a frozen French bread pizza in my adult life: a woman with whom I was living many years ago wanted one for dinner so I baked it for her and took a bite. I was not a fan. 

(Though I once made my own version of French bread pizza with spicy sausage from a local deli and pickled jalapeΓ±os. It was fantastic. It was also, obviously, not frozen.)

And then, not long ago, I saw this: 

I live in the Southern Rockies, about 10 miles outside of a medium-sized city. There is only one market in my immediate area, and its prices are usually 10-20% higher than you find at the grocery stores in town. I do not know what Red Baron French bread pizzas cost in town, as I have never looked, but $4.29 seems a bit high. 

However, they were on sale for $2.78, which seemed like a good deal, so I bought a package. 

Instantly familiar. 

I cooked it in the microwave for one minute (to defrost it), and then two minutes in the air fryer at 400ΒΊ. 

I was shocked by how much I liked it. In my memory, the thick French bread was always the dominant taste, but what stood out to me here was the sauce. It was some of the tastiest pizza sauce I can ever remember having on a frozen pizza. 

(I should point out the the frozen French bread pizzas from youth were always Stouffer's, never Red Baron.)

The quarter-slices of pepperoni were fine, though I do not understand why they are cut that way. 

I wish there had been more sausage; it was good.

Will I be getting these again? Yes... if on sale. One pizza certainly isn't enough for a meal for me, though it does make a wonderful snack. (A few nights later, I had a salad for dinner and then, later in the evening, found myself still hungry, so I cooked the other French bread pizza.) 

THE RATING: πŸ•πŸ•πŸ•