Friday, June 10, 2016

Roasted Peppers, Onions, and Pineapple --please

Thin crust, well-done,a thin layer of cheese, and onions, green peppers and mushroom toppings. A wood table with six chairs pulled close- the pizza served in the cardboard box. Did we have soft drinks or beers? I can't remember, but I gave the crust a thumbs up. Someone said it was New Jersey pizza, short on cheese. Who were the others? Perhaps only the pizza was important. We drove there after class and before the night settled in and the roads filled up with commuters. New Jersey seemed a continent away from the Bronx. They spoke with a different accent. I carry my accent with me as a place mark.

Twenty-minutes to walk to the pizza place in the center of town. When I didn't want to cook, I took my two children there for dinner. Later on when my meals and the atmosphere in the house made staying at the table uncomfortable, the pizza place provided pizza and a friendly owner who knew everyone's name. Was the crust soft and thick or crisp and thin? What toppings? It didn't matter. Comfortable booths, laughter. Twenty years later the brother and sister went back and the owner recognized them. " This was like home," .

 I recall hot sweet potatoes cooked on a push-cart then removed from the ashes and wrapped in newspaper. After the top was cut off you squeezed the potato and ate the insides. No fork necessary.

I don't recall pizza until college.


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