It was a cold November night, as I huddled close to the warmth of my 425° oven and peered through its grease speckled glass to witness the progress of my frozen pizza crisping upon its glowing heating coils.
The yellowish-orange of the oven light illuminated sweltering cheese bubbles that inched closer and closer to the center of my pie, signaling that it was almost done. I canceled the digital timer’s red blinking final countdown and rushed to unsheath my favorite utensil.
The most valuable cutlery in the kitchen.
Alongside my parmesan and red pepper flake shakers, my sacred blend of pizza seasonings and my designated pizza knife (a long, dull boning knife for rotation and retrieval) sits my pride and joy “The Duke”.
The Duke is my trusty pizza-cutter and while Tess finds it extremely silly that I’ve given a pizza-cutter a name and detests the name I’ve chosen, I feel a pizza-cutter as badass as mine deserves a nickname of equal badassness.
Last Christmas, The Duke came as a present from my brother-in-law and craftsman extraordinaire Pat. It was a thoughtful, handcrafted surprise, that totally leveled up my pizza-cutting game forever (Thanks Pat!).
The Duke is custom-made with a thick contoured wood handle and sharp stainless steel circular blade that glides so gracefully you’d think there were ball bearings inside.
The weight of the solid wood handle is what sets The Duke apart from the rest. The heaviness of the handle lets momentum do the work—with one swift, fluid motion, it allows me effortlessly sail through even the crispest of crusts.
It leaves behind perfectly straight, even lines and works just as well whether you’re dicing up deep-dish or extra-thin; party-cuts, wedges or strips.
The pizza cutter is the most important tool in any pizza lovers toolkit, yet often it’s the most overlooked.
For most of my life, I’ve settled for flimsy, plastic devices that wobble willy nilly from one crust to the next; leaving jagged uneven lines and unproperly cut slices. In college, I even resorted to scissors once.
But, trust me, once you’ve had your grasp on a heavy-duty pizzeria caliber pizza cutter it’s hard to go back. As with many of the finer things in life, you don’t know what you’re missing until you experience one.
Who would have thought I’d get as much joy cutting pizzas as I do eating them?
Perhaps the pizza cutter isn’t just another boring, but necessary kitchen gadget, in my case, it’s a gift that keeps on giving. Even mundane tasks can become quite enjoyable when we’ve got the proper tools.
What I’m eating: Jack’s pepperoni perfectly cut in squares thanks to the Duke
What I’m reading: The Richest Man in Babylon -George Samuel Clason