Monday, December 14, 2009

personal pizza

When its a cold day and you've seen just about enough pizza ads to almost make you pick up the phone and order take out, you can make your own pizza in just a few minutes...faster than the delivery guy...and healthier for you too.

The dough... since I make no-knead bread on a regular basis, I keep dough in the fridge. I just cut off a fist sized piece, roll it out and add my toppings. You may need to add a smidge more time to make some dough. So here it is.

Per pizza I start with 1 1/2 cup of flour ( bread, A.P. or a mix is fine. I use bread flour)

3/4 cup of water

1/2 tsp of salt

1 tsp of yeast (or 1/2 package if you get the envelopes from the store)

1-2 tbl of good olive oil

Mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. I pour the water into the flour, yeast and salt mixture and just stir until its a really wet ball. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until it gets firmer and springy. (you can omit the kneading if you use the no-knead method, substituting time for your effort).

Place back in the bowl and drizzle the oil over the ball and cover with plastic wrap (or just use a shower cap like I do).

Set in a warm place to rise. This takes an hour or so. You can also put it in the fridge for the next day. The time actually develops the structure of the dough, much as kneading would.

When you have a dough that is ready to use (by what ever method you choose), roll out onto a baking sheet and add your favorite, BBQ, olive oil, ranch dressing, marinara, the choices are endless.... and add cheese or cheeses and toppings.

For the pizza shown, I put BBQ sauce on the dough and added a blend of four italian cheeses from Kraft and topped it with a half boneless skinless chicken breast and a slice of red onion, chopped, which had been quickly stir fried with pinch of garlic salt and olive oil. I cut the leftover black olives from Thanksgiving in half and tossed those on there too. I also like to drizzle a bit of oil on the crust and sprinkle the crust with garlic salt before I bake it.

I popped it in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes. Then because I like the bottom crust crisp, I slid it off the pan just onto the oven rack for another 5 minutes. YUM!!!

This is a perfect dish to use your leftover in. I don't know about you guys, but there is always a half of onion, red pepper or a few mushrooms in my fridge veggie drawer.

This makes a wonderful ham and cheese sandwich/pizza by laying a few thin slices of ham on the dough and topping with any cheese or cheese mix you like... Again, bake until the top is crispy and brown about 20-30 minutes.

The oven warms your kitchen and the pizza warms you inside. This dish is inexpensive to make and if you use your left overs, prevents waste. Of course, you can always make more and share a meal with a friend or neighbor.

Enjoy! Or should I say manga!!

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