Our weekly series Crimes Against Food takes an irreverent but informative look at culinary misdemeanours.
This week Ganesh Raj explores the love-them or hate-them stuffed crust pizzas.
It is an abomination that even the Pope cannot forgive.
Ceres, the Greek God of the Harvest, smirks at the mention of this ultimate sin.
And heathens all over the world celebrate it with the fervour of a Byzantine feast.
I am, of course, talking about the ultimate culinary cock-up - the stuffed-crust pizza.
You know the one that houses cheese or a hot dog in the crust in the same way that the pancreas houses bile.
At first I thought it was an April Fools' joke. Something a not so up-and-coming advertising creative had come up with to impress the client. Or maybe the insane ramblings of a Pizza mega-company executive as he tries to win over a female crust-asian (sorry Asians. It's the only thing that rhymed).
The seduction would go something like this: "You'll notice how the dough actually nestles around the stuffing. The hand-tossed crust lends itself to absorbing some of those wonderful flavours, while maintaining the integrity of the filling.... so are you free on Saturday night?"
Sexy? Not really. Putrid? Definitely.
I delved into the dark corners of this culinary insanity and found out the following nutritional info.
A slice of large, stuffed crust pizza is about 270 calories, with about 10 grams of fat.
In the States, add in the hot dog and the "mustard drizzle" (naturally), which, if it were just mustard, might not be so bad, but is inevitably full of butter or other fillers, and you've got a ludicrous food item that no human should ever put near, let alone into, their mouth.
So why do people eat it? Is it some sort of foodie S&M fetish? Is it the forbidden fruit of vegetarians who nibble the crust to a hair's breath of the meat filling, take a deep whiff of the sweet swine dog and then fling it away in feigned disgust?
Or maybe, deep down inside, the Pizza mega companies know what they are doing. Fat plus fat plus fat, equals three times the gluttony sin. It's so bad, therefore it's good?
That's more mea culpas than even the Pope can handle.
So, what's your verdict on stuffed crusts?