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03/24/2018

~ How to: Perfectly Reheat a Leftover Slice of Pizza ~

IMG_6077Pizza is a staple in my kitchen, and, as a wife and mother who is well-known for craving a "slice of 'za" at midnight, leftover pizza is not something I throw away.  More often than not, it's a few slices of my beloved homemade pie, on rare occasions it's delivery, and, snack pizza, the kind we quickly put together on flatbread (like pocketless pita, Naan and English muffins) are, like bread, milk and eggs, omnipresent in my refrigerator or freezer.  That said, I am not a fan of cold pizza.

IMG_6084I prefer my serving of pizza to be hot with a crispy crust and ooey-gooey cheese melting on the top.  Sadly, it impossible to relive the glory of a freshly-baked hot-off-the-pizza-stone pizza.  One minute you're eating it crispy and pliably fresh, a half hour later, it has achieved leftover status -- and, it is impossible to roll back the clock on a slice of pizza.  Up until a few weeks ago, my pizza-fate was to buck up and talk myself into the joy of eating tasty but second-rate reheats.

IMG_6195Oven or toaster-oven reheats, besides taking to too long to preheat the oven, got me a crispy crust, but, as for the cheese and any toppings, they emerged funkily compromised and shriveled. Microwave reheats, which are fast as can be, rendered me ooey-gooey cheese and plump toppings, but, OMG, the crust -- a soggy shell of its former self for the first few bites transitions (frighteningly fast) to a stone tablet fitting for Moses by the last few bites.  What's a gal to do?

Place a lidded nonstick skillet on the stovetop.

The skillet method, which I came across accidentally, is, to put an appropriately-sized nonstick skillet on the stovetop, big enough for a slice or two to sit flat in the bottom.  There is no need for any no-stick spray or oil (although a splash of olive oil will render an extra-crispy crust, so use it if that's what you want).  Why it works:  A skillet on the stovetop heats up much faster than the oven, and, almost as fast as the microwave, and, while the bottom crust crisps up, the lid traps the steam which melts the cheese and keeps the toppings moist.  Tip:  If you have a glass lid, use it.  It's a great way keep an eye on the process without letting the precious steam escape.  

IMG_6133 IMG_6133 IMG_6133The specifics:  Place pizza slice in pan over medium heat and put a lid on it. Allow it to cook for 5-6 minutes, then check the bottom of the crust.  If you want the crust crispier or the cheese meltier, cook it 1-2 more minutes. Take into account:  A room temperature slice reheats faster than a cold slice, and, the type and thickness of crust, the quantity of cheese + toppings, and, the heat on stovetop all affect timing.

Making the leftover-pizza-world better one-slice-at-a-time.

IMG_6104How to:  Perfectly Reheat a Leftover Slice of Pizza:  Recipe yields instructions to perfectly reheat leftover slices of pizza on the stovetop.  It's brilliant!

Special Equipment List:  appropriately-sized nonstick skillet w/lid

IMG_6192Cook's Note:  Used in the making of the snack pizza in the photos (which I prepared and baked yesterday, then refrigerated overnight in order to write today's reheated post):  

1, 8"-round Boboli pizza crust; 8 deli-slices provolone cheese; 1/4 cup diced sweet onion; 4 small Campari tomatoes, thinly sliced; 1, 4-ounce jar sliced mushrooms, well-drained; a sprinkling of Italian seasoning blend.  

Assemble pizza in order listed and place directly on rack of 350° toaster oven and bake 8-9 minutes. 

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2018)

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