Monday, March 12, 2012

Meatless Monday: Pizza

Pizza Margherita + Salad Pizza

Once again we embark on another Meatless Monday. This time we're bringing you everyone's favorite delicacy... PIZZA!

Pizza Margherita is a classic combination of tomato, fresh mozzarella, and basil. It's a little tangy from the tomato and a little creamy from the cheese and, well, it's delicious.

As for Salad Pizza, it's something we sort of made up that was inspired by a pizza from California Pizza Kitchen. Basically, it's a yummy mixed greens salad thrown on top of a pizza crust. Really. There's nothing to not like about salad pizza. My favorite combination is mixed greens, balsamic vinaigrette, dried cranberries, toasted walnuts, and goat cheese. However, you could easily put any salad at all on top of a pizza crust and call it Salad Pizza.

Making pizza at home is a lot of trial and error, especially with stretching the dough from a ball into something that resembles pizza. Be patient. You'll get it. Here are some tips:
  • Turn the fan on above the stove if you have one. 
  • Making pizza is a great way to test your smoke detector. Be ready because it WILL go off.
  • Use plenty of cornmeal underneath the uncooked pizza dough. You should be able to shake the cookie sheet and have the dough slide easily.

Pizza Margherita
  • tomato pizza sauce (recipe follows)
  • fresh pizza dough from the store or your local pizza shop
  • fresh mozzarrella
  • fresh basil
  • corn meal
1) Preheat oven to as high as your oven will go. Put a pizza stone in there and let it heat up for about 45 minutes.
2) Spread your pizza dough into a pizza shape. First, pat it into a disc shape. Use your knuckles and gently stretch the dough at the ends.
3) Sprinkle corn meal on an edgeless cookie sheet. Put the pizza dough on top and make sure it will easily slide off.
4) Spread some sauce on the pizza dough, layer slices of mozzarella, and tear basil on top.
5) When oven and pizza stone are preheated, with a quick, swift movement, slide the pizza dough onto the pizza stone.
6) Let the pizza cook until it looks delicious!

Salad Pizza

1) Make a salad and keep it in the fridge so it doesn't get soggy.
2) Cook the pizza dough the same way as above.
3) When the pizza crust is golden and looks tasty, take it out of the oven.
4) Toss salad with dressing and pile it on top of the pizza crust.
5) Enjoy!

The Easiest Pizza Sauce Ever

1) Saute some chopped onion in a pan until soft. Add chopped garlic and cook for about 30 seconds so it doesn't burn.
2) Pour a can of San Marzano tomatoes (or any kind of tomatoes) into the pan, add some tomato paste, and some torn fresh basil. Let it simmer for a good while until it's a nice consistency.
3) Cool sauce before using on pizza

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