John Schnatter was only 23 years old when he used 1600 dollars of start-up money to buy a pizza oven and have it installed in the broom closet of an Indiana tavern. John started delivering his hot, fresh pizzas, and in 1984, the first year of his business, he sold 300 to 400 pizzas a week. One year later, he opened the first Papa John’s restaurant, and has become an American success story.
Today the company has expanded to over 2600 locations in 49 states and has revenues of 1.7 billion dollars a year. That puts John’s business in the top three of all restaurant chains in overall sales growth, and the country’s fastest growing pizza chain.
John has kept the Papa John’s menu simple. You won’t find salads or subs or chicken wings on his menu. The company just sells pizza, with side orders of breadsticks and cheesesticks made from the same pizza dough recipe. With each order of breadsticks or cheesesticks comes your choice of dipping sauces.
I’ve got clones here for all three of those tasty sauces. You can use these easy clones as dips for a variety of products, or you can simply make your own breadsticks by baking your favorite pizza dough, then slicing it into sticks. If you want cheesesticks, just brush some of the Garlic Sauce on the dough, then sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and bake. Slice the baked dough into sticks and use the dipping sauce of your choice. It’s a cinch.
Special Garlic Sauce
1/2 cup margarine spread
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1. Combine ingredients in a small bowl.
2. Microwave on 1/2 power for 20 seconds. Stir.
Makes 1/2 cup.
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup Cheez Whiz
2 teaspoon juice from canned jalapeños (nacho slices)
1. Combine cornstarch with milk in a small bowl and stir until cornstarch has dissolved.
2. Add Cheez Whiz and stir to combine. Microwave on high for 1 minute, then stir until smooth.
3. Add juice from jalapeño slices, and stir.
Makes 1/2 cup.
1 10 3/4-ounce can of tomato puree
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/8 teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon thyme
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1. Combine ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat.
Bring to a boil.
2. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
Makes 1 cup.