2019 Pizzas #29: Dad’s Famous Hogmanay Pizza

I knew, when I decided to log pizzas on the blog for 2019 at the end of 2018 (a year in which I logged ciders, but now knew I would not be continuing to do so due to my decision to stop drinking alcohol), that the last pizza in the log would be Dad’s homemade pizza that he makes every Hogmanay. I also knew that it would be the best pizza I ate all year, because it is (and continues to be) the best pizza I have ever eaten.

A few notes about this pizza:

  • I always knew I would learn to make it myself at some point because it’s an important family recipe, but I did not expect that I would not end up posting this blog until after I had indeed made one myself for the first time.
  • I took pictures of the 2019 edition, but accidentally deleted them (this is NOT something that usually happens with me – I’m normally very careful about keeping all my photos!) so the pictures in this post are from other years instead.
Hogmanay pizza
Sitting ‘patiently’ with Grandad while Dad made the pizza, 1986.
Hogmanay pizza
Mum and Dad enjoying the spoils, 1995.
Hogmanay pizza
A whole pizza to myself, 2002…
Hogmanay pizza
…and again, 2005. In those days I used to eat the pizza earlier in the evening and then head out for a long night on the tiles! It was a great stomach liner in the days when I still had to worry about such things…
Hogmanay pizza
Dough rolling, 2009.
Hogmanay pizza
A perfect slice, 2018.
Hogmanay pizza
Dee’s famous Hogmanay pizza? Had to make it myself in 2020.
  • The basic recipe is in a 1979 cookbook that Dad has always used (‘The Art of Cooking’), but he learnt the best technique from some Italian friends-of-friends back in the early ’80s.
  • I brought about fifteen schoolfriends back to the house on Hogmanay 2000 when we were doing our alcohol-fuelled rounds of each other’s houses, just so they could all experience the brilliance of Dad’s Hogmanay pizza. Many of them still talk about it more than twenty years later.

The sauce is the absolute taste of Hogmanay for me. Since learning how to cook it myself, I’ve adapted some of the techniques when making pasta sauce. Toppings-wise you can have whatever you want, though for me it’s always been mostly peppers since I went veggie in 1999. The dough is thick and filling, though not filling enough that I don’t manage at least four large slices every Hogmanay!

I’m actually quite surprised that, in the end, I only ate twenty-nine distinct pizzas during a calendar year. I clearly have my recurring favourites.

A new food series for 2020 starts in a couple of weeks. I’m only one year behind now!

Hogmanay pizza, 1995

Dad always makes homemade pizza on Hogmanay. I eat a lot of pizza, but Dad’s recipe is my favourite, and it’s super special because it only gets made once a year. This year, I’ll be spending New Year away from Scotland for the first time in my life due to the pandemic, and so I’ll be attempting to make the recipe myself.

Here’s a photo of Hogmanay (aka pizza night) from 1995.

Hogmanay pizza, 1995

Today’s earworm playlist:

Robbie Williams – ‘Soul Transmission’

On the last day of the year

On paper, it’s been a very fruitful 2018. I hit my target weight and have run a lot of races (including two half marathons) and have got more writing done this year than I’ve ever managed before, partly due to the daily writing habit that this blog has encouraged. My business also had another good year of growth.

Unfortunately, my mental health has seriously deteriorated this year, and is now probably at its worst since I was in my late teens. I don’t talk about it much on here but I have really been struggling recently. As such, I have very mixed feelings about the last year.

I hope 2019 will be less ambivalent. For me, and for everyone else.

Now I’m off to go eat as many slices as possible of Dad’s famous Hogmanay pizza. I’ll be back tomorrow to celebrate this blog’s first birthday!

OOTD 31st December 2018
OOTD: semi-dressed-up Hogmanay outfit! Top David Emanuel (vintage 1980s, bought at vintage fair 2018).

Today’s earworm playlist:

AJ Tracey and Notes – Butterflies
Duran Duran – Hungry Like The Wolf
Dua Lipa – New Rules
Ellie Goulding – Starry Eyed