Archive for September 17, 2009

JetBlue #AYCJ: Day One – Alexandria, Virginia

Yesterday was my first day on my All You Can Jet pass.  My darling and very sleepy husband dropped me off at the Raleigh-Durham airport at a bit before 5:30am.  I sailed through security (if you can call it “sailing through” when you have to haul a laptop out of your carry on suitcase that’s very full) and strolled to the gate, sadly passing by the secondhand book store.  (I have no room for books – so sad!  Thank goodness for my iPhone; I’m reading 1633 on it at the moment.) 

I boarded my flight to JFK and settled in to my seat.  Since I didn’t want to use up my battery and had no book, I was VERY grateful for the personal tvs and number of options.  The flight attendants cheerfully passed out a huge selection of goodies.  I tried the “breakfast snack,” which I didn’t care for – they tasted like uber bland animal crackers.  I also tried the chocolate chunk cookies, which were fair.  My seatmate, a lady probably in her 60s, seemed a bit ruffled by her flying experience.  She seemed especially concerned that I coughed… um, I bet probably 3 times in the first 30 minutes or so.  She asked if I was “very sick” in a way that suggested she thought I was “very sick” and that she was simultaneously scared and trying to appear concerned for my well being.  I assured her that I was just getting over a little cold (the truth).  Anyway, we landed uneventfully in JFK.

I’d not been to the JetBlue terminal in JFK before – it’s so nice!  There are lots of shops and places to eat, and there are these sets of tables with stools where people can sit on stools and charge their laptops or phones or whatever and order food or drinks to be delivered to their spot via a little touch screen tv.  I set up camp there for a bit and then boarded the plane to Dulles.

There were only 2 snack choices on this flight and many fewer drink choices as well.  I thought that was odd, but whatever.  It wasn’t a long flight, and I didn’t really want anything other than water.  The guy I sat next to slept most of the way, with the window shade open and bright sun streaming in.  He must’ve been really tired!  When I got off the plane, a fellow saw me messing with my iPhone (I was tweeting) and asked if I could help him send a picture from his own phone.  It wasn’t an iPhone, so I was clueless!  He was a nice guy though – also doing the AYCJ thing (but not a blogger or Twitter user).  We swapped itineraries out of interest.  He’s going to see some friends, go help shoot a movie(???), and go on a cruise.  Sounds cool.

Have you heard me say before how much I hate Dulles?  Well, I despise it.  I hate having to get in those shuttles to get anywhere – so irritating.  And the fact that the first on are the last off is dumb too.  Oh well.  My online friend, Sonadora (a well known wine blogger – check her out!), picked me up and took me to her house for the day. 

We’ve known each other for several years online, but this was the first time we’d met in person.  We have a lot in common (you know – both relatively young female attorneys who grew up in and live in the US lol), so we chatted while she worked from home.  It was a great day!  She fed me a quesadilla for lunch (I love quesadillas!) and, after her super sweet husband got home, she made us this amazing pizza for dinner.  She made HOMEMADE pizza dough, put tomatoes from her own garden as the base, and then topped it with a freaking ton of fresh and shredded mozzerella.  She also added some salami to the part for her husband.  It was soooo good – and ridiculously filling.  I can normally down 3 pieces of pizza without a second thought, and I didn’t make it through 2 of these.  Boy, it was so good that I’d consider making it myself sometime.  And maybe even growing tomatoes.

1 package dry active yeast
1 cup warm water, must be between 105-115 degrees or it will not wokr
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons olive oil
2.5-3.5 cups of flour
1 teaspoons cornmeal

Heat the oven to 200 with the mixer bowl in there. 

Pour warm water in the warm mixing bowl and add the yeast.  Add the salt, olive oil and 2.5 cups of flour and mix with the dough hook on 2 for about a minute. (PS: One friend adds just a bit more salt than called for as she likes her dough just a touch saltier.)

Add flour .5 cup at a time until the dough ball clings to the hook and cleans the sides of the bowl. Continue mixing dough on 2 for about 2 more minutes after this has happened. Dough should not be sticky to the touch when done, if it is, add more flour.

Grease sides of a bowl with olive oil and put the dough ball in, making sure to turn it so all sides get greased. Cover the bowl with saran wrap and stick it back in the 200 degree oven for about an hour until it has doubled in size.

Heat oven to 450 after you have removed the dough with the stone in the over.

Form your pizza on parchment paper so it doesn’t stick to the stone. Put the cornmeal and a bit of olive oil on the parchment paper and I spread that mix into the size of my pizza stone, then punch down and form your pizza. Add your toppings. Place the whole thing on the stone (very carefully, the stone is hot and my friend warns she has a tendency to drop her parchment paper!). Bake at 450 for 15-20 minutes until the cheese is bubbling and turning golden.

September 17, 2009 at 8:38 am 3 comments


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