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Florida Part Three: Pizza Night + Go Karts

Someone left a comment on my last post that they bet this final Florida post would contain wedding pictures. I’m sad to report that the best you’re going to get here is some pizza. Not quite the same…haha!

The last two days of our trip were so much fun (and full of good food!). We wrapped up a long day at the beach with a family pizza night.


These two like to plant themselves directly in the middle of the kitchen floor (I’m guessing because the tile is cool plus there’s the chance they’ll get food).


My dad makes delicious homemade pizza. He uses the pizza dough recipe from Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice. It involves some planning ahead as the dough has to rest in the fridge for a day or two but it’s so worth it. It’s the best tasting homemade dough I’ve ever had. (Much, much better than the pre-made dough balls at Trader Joe’s or other stores.)


Look how official he is with his pizza peel! They really do make life so much easier when you’re trying to transfer a pizza to the oven.


His secret ingredients are simple and include homemade red sauce, spicy Italian sausage and lots of good cheese. This one featured mozzarella and an aged provolone. The key is to freshly grate them and not buy the pre-shredded stuff. It melts so much better that way.


Once again, I was put on salad duty. (I have it pretty easy when I’m home!) We enjoyed one last dinner outside.


With this incredible sunset as our backdrop.


My salad included spinach, mixed greens, tomatoes, blue cheese, toasted pecans, dried cranberries and my homemade honey dijon balsamic dressing. Don’t let the single slice of pizza here fool you. There were two more that followed! πŸ™‚


Missy camped out under the table in hopes that some pizza might make it her way but at 93 pounds, pizza isn’t exactly an approved food in her diet. πŸ˜‰


After dinner my fiance and I drove into Destin to visit one of my favorite childhood spots, The Track, for some evening entertainment. I hadn’t been to The Track in probably 15 years. I was excited to find a new three-story wood track for the go-karts. We did a few go-kart rides and then had a mini-golf rematch in which I triumphed again. It was a good night!


We wrapped up our trip with brunch at The Donut Hole (this place is so old-school they don’t even have a website or facebook page) with my dad on Monday morning. This is another favorite spot I’ve been visiting for 20+ years!


I was super sad to discover that they were out of apple fritters but we did share an old fashioned sour cream donut. I ordered a veggie omelet, sliced tomatoes and cinnamon raisin toast.


After brunch I read a book by the pool for an hour and then packed up and bid farewell to the beach until next time.


I made the return trip home with a precious carry on of two loaves of my dad’s sourdough. It went through the security scan with me, on the plane, through the Atlanta Airport for a connection and back to Charlotte where I sliced and froze it!


And that wraps up my marathon three-part post about my vacation. And one last bit of news…my dad asked me this morning if I still want him to contribute recipe posts to the blog…to which I responded “YES!” so hopefully we’ll get that up and going! πŸ™‚

Have a great day!

Have you tried making homemade pizza?

What’s your favorite type of donut?

{ 22 comments… add one }
  • elizabeth June 17, 2015, 11:07 am

    Lately I use a quick food processor crust and cook it in a large cast iron skillet. We also like pizza on a baguette, baked in the iron skillet.
    I don’t have any good donuts nearby, but I like old fashioned and coconut, I’ve never had a chance to try many fancy flavors, my husband likes apple fritters and maple bars.
    Looking forward to your Dad’s recipes.

  • Susanne June 17, 2015, 11:16 am

    I grew up going to Destin (and the Track!) too, but just learned about Donut Hole this year – it is SO delicious! The omelettes, tomato slices, pancakes, donuts…yum!!!

  • Amanda June 17, 2015, 11:41 am

    That pizza looks amazing. I can’t wait for your dad to contribute some recipes!

  • Erin June 17, 2015, 12:01 pm

    Can your dad do a tutorial on all the pizza components?! I need a good sauce recipe!

    We’re going go-karting as part of our staff retreat next month. I actually don’t think I’ve ever been…I’m excited to go, and nervous to crash!

    Aaaaaand, I just put The Rosie Project on hold at my library. Always need suggestions! πŸ™‚

    • Jen DeCurtins June 19, 2015, 8:18 am

      I hope you like it!

  • Jacklyn @ Jack's Balancing Act June 17, 2015, 1:13 pm

    I have loved these recaps. Just reading them makes me feel relaxed ha! I recently got my first sourdough starter up and running and would love to know what recipe your dad follows for his bread. Looks so so good!

  • Jacklyn @ Jack's Balancing Act June 17, 2015, 1:16 pm

    I have loved these recaps. Just reading them makes me feel relaxed ha! I recently got my first starter up and running and would love to know what recipe your dad follows for his sourdough. Looks so so good!

  • kristin | W [H] A T C H June 17, 2015, 1:23 pm

    i am definitely going to look into this pizza dough recipe!

  • tara June 17, 2015, 1:25 pm

    i love homemade pizza !!!! i started making it before i had to go GF so i was already eating homemade vs pizza out. now i make GF pizza dough. i doctor up bob’s red mill crust and make it super thin. a pizza stone is so important it truly changes homemade pizza. as for donuts i havent had any in more than 3 years save for a blueberry GF one i made that was just so so, but in OH we have krispy kreme donuts and they are the best ! as a kid i loved this one with apple pie filling and lots of cinnamon sugar or a custard filled one.

  • She Rocks Fitness June 17, 2015, 1:26 pm

    I LOVE that you brought all that bread home. I freeze a lot of bread too. I also love that the diner gave you cinnamon raisin bread. I cannot remember the last time I had that. It’s so good smothered in butter and reminds me of my childhood. πŸ™‚

  • Dani @ DaniCaliforniaCooks June 17, 2015, 1:32 pm

    One time I checked a really small bag when flying just so I could bring home three bottles of this amazing homemade dressing. Girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do!

    • Jen DeCurtins June 19, 2015, 8:22 am

      Ha! That sounds like something I would definitely do!

  • meredith @ The Cookie ChRUNicles June 17, 2015, 3:01 pm

    I really need to make my own pizza dough rather than buy the store made ones from TJ…Favorite donut is always a chocolate crΓ¨me filled from Dunkin Donuts but I haven’t had it in years! I also like Boston CrΓ¨me and I love all of the munchkins from the Peter Pan bakery in Brooklyn- the best!

    • Jen DeCurtins June 19, 2015, 8:27 am

      Yum!! Making your own dough makes a huge difference. Worth it if you have the time!

  • Christin June 17, 2015, 3:52 pm

    I feel like our Dads would get along… mine seems to be a lot like yours: very serious about food and loves to cook for his family. And the Break Baker’s Apprentice is one of his favorites!! Glad you had so much fun. πŸ™‚

  • Ashley @ A Lady Goes West June 17, 2015, 4:46 pm

    Hi Jen! Yay for family time and beach time. My hubby and I love to make pizza, but we always go for the pre-made dough. Your Dad’s dough recipe sounds yummy! Glad you had a great trip! πŸ™‚ Yay for bread!

  • Cassie Tran June 17, 2015, 5:08 pm

    Your dogs are adorable as usual. Plus the pizzas look divine!

    • Jen DeCurtins June 19, 2015, 8:28 am


  • Julie @ Running in a Skirt June 18, 2015, 8:24 am

    I just perfected making pizza from the dough ball at the store… now I”m moving on to trying my own dough! Your Pops have inspired me!
    So glad you had a great time. I’m calling my Dad right now and suggesting he move from Orlando to a condo on the coast πŸ™‚

  • Cindy June 18, 2015, 9:26 am

    I hope he will share the sourdough bread recipe. Does he create his own starter?

    • Jen June 18, 2015, 11:50 am

      He ordered it from King Arthur Flour and keeps it in the fridge. He feeds it every couple of weeks or so to keep it going.

  • Brooke@SWEETNSWEATY June 20, 2015, 7:43 am

    I would love to see your Dad’s pizza sauce recipe. I am trying my hardest to create a homemade pizza with LESS sodium for my boyfriend and as you know the sauce is the killer. I don’t eat Gluten so we love to do our own individual make your own pizza’s. I would love to see your dad do a whole post on the homemade pizza!

    Looks like you had a great trip. I love Destin, FL but I haven’t been in years.

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