Mother's Market Pizza-by-the-Slice Gets Better with Each Bite

Since milady has the appetite of a puppy, and her business is near the Mother's Market in SanTana, I usually trek over there to buy the gal lunch. Their food court is a smaller version of the grand, wasteful buffet Whole Foods operates, and while some entrees seem appetizing (rice pilafs, soups), others define bad buffet food. I recently saw black-bean burritos in one tray, and beyond the fact that no respectable burrito features the dark legume (sorry, Chipotle fans: only the southern states of Mexico eat black beans, and the burrito is a borderlands phenomenon), I saw a lot of burritos soggy with their sweat. Soggy burritos make great weapons in TP-ing a house but as a foodstuff qualify as an insult slightly below mild habanero salsa.

I digress. Yesterday, I bought milady a slice of pizza--big, organic, sitting for only a couple of minutes, and quite pricey at $2.75. I haven't tried pizza-by-the-slice since the summer, when I was at a conference in Philadelphia and you could find multiple places that sold them by the buck. While getting her one, I noticed Mother's also offered a pizza with jalapeño and soy pepperoni. If I was going to get ripped off, why not do it twicely?

Too many mock meats have a greasy aftertaste to them, and Mother's soy pepperoni doesn't buck the trend. I would've liked more cheese, and a milkier kind at that. But the slice kept improving in flavor with every bite, until I reached it's glorious crust: crunchy like a chicharrón, not greasy at all, with a robust yeast flavor. I still say Mother's pizza-by-the-slice is a bit much, but buy a large one for about $18 and you'll have a good treat.

Mother's Market SanTana, 151 E. Memory Ln., Santa Ana, (714) 542-6667;

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