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  • Bonnie Randall

Pssst! What's Your Favorite Kind of Pizza?

'...Kyle wore an apron and hairnet. “Hey.” He aimed an elbow at Elizabeth. “Green pepper and mushroom. I’ll go get one started right now.”

Andrew glanced back and someone tossed money into her guitar case, a scant amount of coins, but still a hell of a lot more than he’d ever given her to play. Between that and the piece she played now, one he didn’t recognize, he felt disconnected. Out of her loop.

Hell, who was he kidding? He was out of her realm. “She won’t eat with me, little Fawn.”

“You don’t know that. Jeez, Andrew. Don’t you know anything about dating?”...'

I love when food makes an appearance in novels, and as a writer, I enjoy creating the unique bond that occurs when people break bread together. Eating is both universal necessity and pleasure, yet every palate is as unique as a person's personality, and it's cool to discover what my characters like, and don't like. (In Divinity & The Python, Cameron Weste hates coffee. Say whaaattt? What is wrong with him?!)

In Within The Summit's Shadow, Andrew and Elizabeth have never - despite having once had a deep, intense friendship - ate together. Once upon a time, a teenage Elizabeth was way too self-conscious about her weight to ever eat in front of Andrew, and Andrew, stoic, self-absorbed, and clueless, never lowered himself to actually ask her for a date.

Nonetheless, Kyle King, determined to play cupid, shares 'insider information' with Andrew: Elizabeth likes green pepper & mushroom pizza. an adult, Andrew isn't cringey about being seen with Elizabeth. He's more concerned that she would cringe at having to be out with him. Still, as they reluctantly join forces to unspool a mystery, they land at a local pizzeria, where Andrew orders a pizza to share - then is surprised when Elizabeth (apparently no longer reticent when she's famished) requests Thousand Island dip with the wings that precede their pizza ("Who knew that was good?" he wonders, yet never gets to find out; Elizabeth unapologetically devours the platter of wings).

Now, the fictional Kodiak Andrew and Elizabeth visit for pizza doubtlessly uses a commercial recipe for their crust. I, on the other hand, have used the same, homemade recipe throughout my entire marriage (Silver Anniversary this year!), a thick, bread-like crust. Friday night homemade pizza is one of my family's favorite traditions. Here's my recipe. Enjoy!

Pizza Dough

2 1/2 cups flour

1 cup warm water

1/4 cup olive oil (oil infused with garlic is a nice touch)

1 tbsp yeast

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp sugar

In a small bowl, combine warm water, yeast & sugar. Let rise 10 minutes.

In a larger bowl, combine flour & salt. Add yeast mix and oil to flour. Knead well and let rise 15 minutes. Spread out on a greased pizza pan spinkled with cornmeal. Add your favorite toppings, bake for 35-45 minutes, broiling for the last 3 min. YUM!


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