The Easy Way Ina Garten Takes Delivery Pizza to the Next Level

2020 was rough for a lot of people. The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic got in the way of a lot of plans and completely changed the normal course of life for many people. Even celebrities like Ina Garten had to adjust their ways of living during the pandemic. Now that certain parts of the pandemic are largely behind us, people are starting to do what feels normal to them once again, like ordering takeout with friends. Garten’s recipes are usually made from scratch but she has the perfect way to spice up some delivery pizza.

Ina Garten smiles as she arrives at 'Ina Garten in Conversation with Danny Meyer'
‘Barefoot Contessa’ star Ina Garten | Noam Galai/WireImage

The pandemic changed Ina Garten’s way of life

Everyone knows the Barefoot Contessa as a hostess. She loves to throw dinner parties and invite people over. But the pandemic made that an extremely unsafe thing to do.

“We didn’t go anywhere, because no one knew what was going on,” Garten said of how she spent the pandemic in an interview with Elle. “I was cooking every meal for us, I was doing Instagram every day to try to help people figure out what to do with all those dried white beans in their pantry, which people bought but didn’t know what to do with. And I was working on a book and working on TV.”

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But by May, Garten couldn’t do it anymore.

“By the middle of May, I was completely unglued. Literally, I was in bed curled up in a ball. And I said to Jeffrey, we need to do two things: First, we need to order takeout, because people don’t seem to be dying from ordering takeout,” she said.

In addition to ordering takeout, Garten felt that she needed to see people. So, she and her husband, Jeffrey, invited another couple over.

How Ina Garten elevates her pizza

With Garten, presentation is everything, even when she orders takeout. So, when she decided to have the other couple over, she set out orange and red dahlias in wood boxes and put candles all around the table.

“And the pizzas didn’t go in cardboard, they went on platters,” she said. “The first second when we sat down far apart it felt weird, but after that we just had a wonderful time. That’s the kind of thing I really needed to do.”

Barefoot Contessa’s recipe for California pizza

If you want to get fancy and make your own pizza, Garten’s recipes for pizza are tasty. Her California pizza is pretty popular. All you need for the dough is water, dry yeast, honey, olive oil, salt, and flour. You can choose your own toppings like onions, goat cheese, mozzarella, prosciutto, peppers, arugula, and more. The recipe recommends choosing eight toppings.

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To make the dough, combine the water, yeast, honey, and olive oil using a mixer with a dough hook. Add three cups of flour and salt and mix. Keep adding flour while mixing so the dough stays soft. Knead it on low speed for 10 minutes. Put the dough on a board with flour and hand knead it. Put the dough in a bowl and cover it with oil. Let it rise for 30 minutes. Separate the dough into six parts and roll each part into a ball. Place all the balls on a baking sheet and cover them with a damp towel.

Set the oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Roll and stretch each ball into a little pizza. Brush the pizzas with olive oil and add your chosen toppings. Bake the pizzas for 15 min.