Sunday, November 11, 2018

Mama Cozzi's Sausage and Pepperoni Extra Large Thin Crust Take and Bake Pizza (Aldi)

As delicious as it is salty and greasy.
In the midst of a large fight with my wife, in which she left to clear her mind and hang out with family members and friends for a little while, I was abandoned at home with very little food in the house, and very little money in the bank account to get any. I brandied about the idea of getting a “hot and ready” pizza from Little Caesar’s, which I don’t mind eating once in a while, but since I already had to pick up a couple other groceries from Aldi, I just decided to pick up one of their take and bakes. Best of all, with a recent price cut just in time for the “big game”, most of their extra-large pizzas, which are two inches bigger than a similar pizza from Little Caesar’s, are the same price. Sounded like a no-brainer.

Now I’ve had Mama Cozzi’s plain pizzas before, and as you can see from some previous reviews, I eat far too many of these things. While I think they tend to “hit” more than “miss”, we really have to be in the mood for them in order to get them. But I was hungry and wanted something that I could just quickly toss in the oven and forget about, and this fit the bill.

Unsurprisingly, cooking this pup was very easy: as with all of their pizzas, you simply take it out of the plastic and place in the oven. I don’t know if I tend to get pizzas with a ton of toppings, but usually the pizzas I end up with take anywhere from 13-20 minutes to cook, on 400 degrees or higher. That’s why I was pretty taken aback to see that this pizza requires a mere 7-9 minutes at 375. Given the amount of meats involved, I was expecting it to take longer.

Anyway, I don’t know if I was just super-hungry, but this pizza really freakin’ hit the spot. I grabbed a slice right out of the oven, in all its drippy, greasy glory (and this thing is greasy), and all the flavors just blended really well. The pepperoni is pretty standard, which is to say that it’s delicious by default, but the sausage is really where it‘s at. They use large chunks, rather than the standard small crumbles, and each one is bursting with flavor. It really takes it above the normal store brand take and bakes. The crust was also nice and buttery, and was delicious enough on its own that I didn’t even need to dip it in ranch (which I always tend to do). I left it in the oven for slightly longer than the recommended 9 minutes, but the outer edges were nice and toasty while the middle was a little flimsy, which I like. There’s also plenty of the meat toppings to go around, especially at this price point.

The biggest drawback is that all the toppings are just dumped in the middle of the pizza by default, so some time has to be spent moving everything around. Since it isn’t a frozen pizza, it’s not so much of a big deal, as none of the toppings are stuck to the pizza, but it’s still kind of an annoyance to have to do that. Cheese lovers will also probably be disappointed, as they seem to cut back a little bit on the cheese.

Overall: 9/10. I don’t know if I was just hungry, but this really hit the spot. After about 11 minutes in the oven, this puppy was ready to go in all its drippy, delicious glory! The cheese is lacking a little bit, and there’s “some assembly required” if you want toppings all throughout, as the factory seems to just dump them all in the middle of the pizza, but it doesn’t take long to spread them around. The crust was buttery and delicious, without the necessary addition of ranch, which I always like to dip my crusts in. The sausage is excellent, while the pepperoni is just pepperoni (there’s also a bunch of small pepperoni bits on top of the standard circular peps, which really bring out that flavor). Of course, it’s pretty salty, but I didn’t even notice because the meat flavor was even stronger. One of my fave take and bakes that Aldi offers, for sure.

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