Sunday, September 13, 2015

Iron Skillet and My Dad, Plus a Great Way to Cook Pizza at Home

Hi Dear Folk,

When I see an iron skillet I think of my dad, funny how the brain connects things.  My dad did everything on a large scale when it came to food, well his nick name was Tubby.

Every year we would go camping at least once and if not twice, it was always in Britain, never the Continent.  This was the time when the only camping gear was ex army surplus, I'm talking fifties into the sixties.

One year my dad made his own tent, it was really a portable shed, made of wood, which bolted together, sat in layers on the A30 Austin Van roof rack, with a taupe over it all.  This was long before safety belts, and my sister and I used to lay on a feather quilt that was laid out on top off all the camping gear in the back of the van.

Driving through London a cabby said "What you got there mate, everything but the kitchen sink."  Yes that was us.  No light weight stuff.  along came the double large calor gas burner, on top of which would fit the one enormous iron skillet that my dad had.  A whole breakfast could be cooked at once in this.  Eggs, sausages, mushrooms, tomatoes and fried bread.  I wish we still had that old skillet nobody remembers where it went, but it was probably three times the size of this one.

The inside of a used iron skillet can become like glass and is wonderful to cook on.  So it came as no surprise to me when I ran across what somebody said was the best way to cook pizza at home, beside making your own pizza oven and that is to cook it in an iron skillet.

Living where we do in the Philadelphia area we have access to some great pizzerias well of course with all those Italian immigrants who came over here, one of our local favorites is Francone's, they just make the best sauce.  When we decided to have a go at pizza cooked in an iron skillet we ran over there and bought the dough and the sauce and brought it home.

There was enough dough to make four pizzas and enough sauce for eight.  So this is what you do.  Make your dough large enough to fit the base of your skillet which is hot and has olive oil in it.  Put the dough in and very quickly add your toppings.  It needs to cook no longer than two minutes and tops three, or you will burn the bottom.  Take the pan off the burner and then put it under the broiler/grill for another three minutes and that's it.  It's better than any of those pizza stones, we now use our stone just to put the pizza on and cut it.

So quick, so easy and delicious.

My pizzas were topped with pizza sauce, mozzarella, mushrooms, peppers and basil leaves.

Next time I will have to make up some of my own dough and sauce, toppings of course are what ever one desires.


P.S.  If I had that skillet now I could cook a full size pizza, does anyone know where I can find one?

P.P.S.  But I do have the old Judge Ware teapot that always came camping with us.  My brother in law raked it out of the back of the shed for me and said "Do you have room to take it back this time?"

See the judge on the bakelite lid handle.


  1. The pizza looks yummy. Nice memories of camping. It looks like Pharoah on the lid. :)
    P.S. pizza dough is very easy to try it. I used to make it alot when the kids were growing up.

  2. The pizza looks delicious. I always make my own but never thought of cooking it that way. Lovely memories of your dad who I remember well. Nobody would go hungry or thirsty if he was around! You would probably have to get a huge skillet from a catering suppliers.


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