Homemade Bread, Pizza, and Homegrown Tomatoes – OOPS!

A few years ago, Jane convinced me to purchase a $150 bread maker so she could produce fresh, wonderful loaves of bread for our family.  The idea was a stretch for me from the outset; but, being the wonderful hubby that I am, I bought the bread maker from Macy’s and Jane, gleefully, put on her best Julia Child’s imitation, took to the kitchen, and blended the ingredients to make a loaf of homemade, natural wheat bread.

The whole process took Jane about 3 hours and the bread, without any preservatives, turned to stone 3 hours after it was taken from the oven.  Let’s do the math!  One bread maker, ingredients,  3 hours of Jane’s precious time, AND $150 equals ONE small loaf of bread that went south faster than an illegal alien with a rap sheet!   Jane retired the bread maker; however, that was not the end of her dream to “homemake” some of our nourishment.

Next, she convinced me to plant some tomato seedlings so we could have fresh, vine-ripened tomatoes instead of the fresh, vine-ripened tomatoes at Kroger’s.  I tilled a spot in the backyard, bought the metal racks to hold the plants up when they are loaded with juicy fruit, planted the new sprouts, and stood back awaiting the harvest.  You guessed it!  After battling the slugs, cut worms, birds, squirrels, and other critters, we “harvested” approximately 6 tomatoes at a cost of about $8 per tomato. We could have bought the same tomatoes for less than $1…..but, we choose to grow our own!!!  Jane also used to buy from road-side vendors…..but after a bad batch of corn, she gave that up, too!

Jane’s latest quest is to make her own pizza.  To Hell with Dominos, Papa John’s,  Pizza Hut, and the rest, Jane is determined to make pizza in her kitchen that puts the others to shame. (Incidentally, she wanted me to put a pizza oven in the outdoor fireplace we built last year…..luckily, I was able to talk her out of that expenditure.)   She started by purchasing a pizza stone on which she intended to cook her special ingredient pizza.  $30!  Ka-ching!  Next came the ingredients…..Pillsbury dough, pepperoni, basil, etc., (you get the point)!  Jane spread the fresh dough on the newly bought pizza paddle ($12) and began putting on the tomato sauce, mozzarella, and other “stuff!” She cranked the oven up to 400 degrees and, with some degree of difficulty, moved the pizza off the paddle on to the stone that went into the oven……when it beeped, of course!

Some 30 minutes later, Jane was soaking in her hot bath (breathing fire) and I was on the way to Papa John’s to purchase a $13 pizza that we could actually consume.  Something went drastically wrong with Jane’s pizza experiment.  However, Jane will not be dissuaded….she is determined to cook HER own pizza that will shame the competition!  It might cost me $1,000, but, Jane will eventually get it done.  Jane said she would make the perfect pizza…..or die trying!  Not being a betting man, I won’t make a wager!

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