The colorful photo of six delectable pizza slices jumped out at me from the front cover of Simple and Delicious magazine a few years ago.
Bright fresh yellow corn, halved grape tomatoes, sliced mushrooms, olives, squash, melted cheese, savory meat mixtures and crisp-edged crusts worked their magic as a get-to-the-kitchen motivator.
I was hooked then and there by the different ingredients on each slice.
The idea of the pizza was to divide one simple pie into quarters when arranging the toppings, giving a different flavor experience in each section.
I liked the idea, too, of no homemade from-scratch for this one.
It starts with a ready-made frozen pizza base and goes up from there with choices and taste appeal.
I’m giving the suggested toppers from the article as a starting point, but I made adjustments to fit my tablemates and you can change or rearrange ingredients, too.
You might consider ham and pineapple; barbecue chicken and red onion; Alfredo sauce; pesto; black beans; spinach; all white; pulled pork or beef barbecue; kielbasa; or diced wieners, chili and onion for a” take-me-out-to-the-ballgame” inspiration.
The sloppy Joe slice uses leftover sloppy Joe.
We don’t always keep that at our fingertips.
If it isn’t on hand — or your Joe recipe, just to make it for this, happens to start with three pounds of meat — there are alternatives.
Make up the sloppy Joe on the packet of McCormick Sloppy Joe seasoning mix or reach for the reliable Manwich.
Vegetarians could consider the soy crumbles that mimic ground beef.
Both recipes yield a one-pound amount. Use what you need and freeze any excess.
There are six suggestions for adorning your showcase pizza, but the whole pizza is to be divided into four sections.
I think it’s because perhaps six parts would be too skinny an area to work well.
Nothing says you can’t elect to just make one whole pizza from any ingredients you favor and not bother with the mathematics of division.
The taco pizza is a bonus for your pizzapalooza. It’s an older recipe, but bears repeating, since it also calls upon a frozen pizza for assistance.
Reach Judy Grigoraci at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pizza Four Ways
Makes 4 servings.
One DiGiorno frozen rising crust Italian Sausage or four-cheese pizza.
Top frozen pizza with any of the following in four sections and bake as package directs.
1) Hot and Fresh: blanched fresh corn kernels; halved cherry tomatoes. After baking drizzle with favorite hot sauce and sprinkle with fresh basil strips.
2) German Sensation: fresh sliced Roma tomato, sauerkraut; fennel seed; dried oregano; dried basil; Parmesan cheese and a little extra mozzarella.
3) Pizza Joe: leftover sloppy Joe mixture; Italian seasoning; sliced mushrooms.
4) Fast Supreme: sautéed chopped onion and green bell pepper; sliced mushrooms; ripe olives; pepperoni, shredded mozzarella cheese.
5) Garden Fresh: sliced zucchini and yellow summer squash; shredded Cheddar; crushed pepper flakes.
6) Margherita: sliced fresh tomatoes; shredded mozzarella; minced garlic clove. Garnish baked pizza with fresh basil leaves.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
½ pound ground beef or ground turkey
¾ teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ cup salsa
1 frozen 10 to 12-inch Tombstone Extra Cheese pizza
½ cup shredded Mexican blend cheese
¾ cup shredded iceberg lettuce
Sour cream and diced fresh tomato — optional
BROWN beef with chili powder and cumin; stir in salsa; set aside.(Note: any vegetable of your choice, including vegetarian refried beans, can be substituted for the meat.)
PLACE pizza on baking sheet; bake 5 minutes at 400 degrees; top with beef mixture and cheese. Return to oven until cheese is melted and crust golden, about 10 to 15 minutes. Top with lettuce and if desired, sour cream and tomato.
Nutrition information: (1/6 recipe) 339 calories; 21 grams fat; 53 milligrams cholesterol; 496 milligrams sodium; 21 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 17 grams protein.