Yesterday, I cried.
I cried because, well. If you want the technical terms, it’s because my seventh cranial nerve sent fibers to my lacrimal gland in the form of the greater petrosal nerve, which synapsed in the pterygopalatine ganglion, which is in the nose.
This is the explanation for why your nose runs when you cry. The fibers get a little excited and just innervate everything everywhere in their near vicinity. True story.
In layman’s terms.
I cried yesterday because at approximately 1 pm, I registered for the Boston Marathon.
I’m sure most of you who are not runners are like, “Eh, so what? You enter in your contact info, fork over some money. What’s the big deal?”
And normally, I would agree with you but the thing about the Boston Marathon is that the only way to enter it is to qualify. And to qualify, you need to be fast.
And last year. Exactly one year ago yesterday. I ran a marathon. My first marathon. In 3:35:11.
The thought of which still makes me cry. Partly because it is, I think, one of the things (aside from this little corner of the blogosphere that I devote every ounce of my spare time to, of course) that I’m most proud of. Partly because, after being injured, I am nowhere near that fast. And partly because it has allowed me to do something that so few people get to do. And that is to run the Boston Marathon.
Sorry for all this talk about running lately. It’s just that when you realize you’ve spent fifteen hours in the past week standing in a room with approximately fifty dead bodies in it.
Paying $130 to run 26.2 miles and put your body through hell. Feels kind of like winning the lottery.
At the least, it warrants a celebration.
Wait. What’s that you said? Did I just hear you call for a pizza party?
Mmm. Yes. Your limbic system (i.e. the part of the brain that stimulates both arousal and a pleasurable response to taste. Brodmann’s are 43 to be precise) knows where it’s at.
And yes, I am absolutely implying that sexual prowess is intrinsically linked to your ability to take pleasure in a bowl of ice cream. Need help getting it up? Pull out the whipped cream.
Now, if you’re thinking that this was going to be my entry into PFB round 5. And that in a quite pitiable way, I forged ahead and made it anyway. Then, well. You have way too much faith in my planning and organizational skills.
No, no, no. This pizza was a whim. Something that hit me when I made the mistake of walking down the cheese aisle at Whole Foods. And managed to convince myself that brie was exactly what I was missing in my life. I mean, really. Who needs a man when you have a wheel of brie sitting in your fridge?
And that, my friends, is my new mantra.
Now, if you’ll please excuse me. I have approximately 600+ structures in the head and neck that I’ll need to be able to identify by tomorrow at 8AM. And after that, I’ll be done with anatomy for the rest of my life.
Now that is a reason to celebrate.
Pumpkin Pizza Dough
1 tbsp yeast
3/4 cup warm water
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp unsalted butter
3/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp salt
6 cups bread flour
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree
2 apples (I would use Granny Smith)
4 oz brie
2 links spicy sausage
1. In a small bowl, mix together the yeast, 3/4 cup water, and the brown sugar. Let sit for about five minutes or until it starts foaming. If this never happens, then the yeast are probably dead and, yeah. You should buy new yeast.
2. While the yeast is proofing, in a small saucepan, combine butter, salt, and 3/4 cup water. Heat until the butter melts. Let it cool until you can stick your finger in it without getting burned. Pour this into the yeast mixture. Pour all of this into the bowl of a stand mixer.
3. Measure out 6 cups bread flour. Mix the pumpkin puree into the stand mixer. Mix in the bread flour. Using the bread hook attachment, mix the dough on speed 2 for 10 minutes. Add enough flour so that after a minute of mixing, the dough sticks more to the hook than to the sides of the bowl. The dough should be a little sticky but not TOO wet.
4. Cover the bowl of the stand mixer with a damp paper towel and allow the dough to rise until doubled, about one hour.
5. Preheat oven to 500.
6. After the dough has risen risen, cut off half of it. Sprinkle the half with flour and mold it into a ball. Place on a clean surface that’s covered in flour and roll out to a desired thickness. Place on a pizza pan.
7. Cut apples into thin slices. Layer onto pizza.
8. Remove sausage from it’s casing. Cook in a small saucepan, crumbling it up using a spatula, until it is crisp and browned. Sprinkle over the apple layer.
9. Cut chunks off of your hunk of brie and layer them onto the pizza.
10. Put in the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes or until bottom of dough is starting to get brown.
Please submit your entries to Regional Recipes: GERMANY by October 31st!