Friday, May 1, 2009

A Made Up Meal

God has been opening up so many possibilities using food right from our pantry and freezer shelves!
It has been truly interesting to see what He shows us and we have been amazed over how delicious every single thing we've made has been.

Recently, we had a very busy day and company coming for dinner. I wasn't prepared. I had been holding out for a grocery tip and for some planning time but neither happened.
I quickly checked my cabinets and shelves and came up with some tomato paste, tomato sauce, two packages of shredded mozarella I didn't even know we had and a partial bag of frozen stir fry.

Homemade pizza came to mind so I got four pizza doughs (two doughs and two recipes) started and my DIL had the idea to make the stir fry as a side dish when we found a bag of boil-in-the-bag rice in the cupboard. I was weary of serving such different types together but felt it would stretch the meal.
We all agreed it was wonderful and now plan to do the same again sometime!

My 14-year said these were the best pizzas (the first night) ever. We have made homemade pizza of one kind or another for 20 years so this is saying something. My husband said the same and even my son, Michael, went on and on over them.
All of us did but these three don't always get as excited as I do over a good recipe:)

Our Menu:

Two pizzas
Stir Fry
Fried Rice
Chocolate Cobbler
Coffee & Milk

Here is the best sauce I've tried yet:

It was listed as "Sicilian Pizza" but I only used the sauce and not the crust recipe bec I was in a hurry. The sauce was made up in seconds using a food processor and I love anything calling me to use that!

Mix sauce ingredients in blender or food processor or hand food mill until smooth.
Spread on the sauce, and let the bread rise again in a warm place for about half an hour, or until it is soft and spongy. Bake about 25 minutes in a well-preheated oven, 375 degrees.

Sauce Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/2 onion, coarsley chopped
1 clove garlic
3 Tablespoons tomato paste
2/3 cup chopped tomatoes, fresh or canned
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon, each, oregano and basil (I omitted basil bec/ I was out of it)
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Here is one crust I used: (this one, I let rise and then refrigerated until the next day and made it up for lunch)

Garlic Herb Pizza Crust
3 cups All Purpose Flour Oven 400 degrees
1 pkg instant yeast (.25 oz.)
2 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tbsp chopped dried garlic
8 oz. lowfat milk, warmed to 110 degrees
4 oz. water, warmed to 110 degrees

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare pizza pan by spraying with non-stick cooking spray. Combine dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Add warmed liquids all at once to the dry mixture. Stir until well mixed, incorporating all the dry ingredients. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and set aside for about 20-25 minutes, allowing the dough to rise. Empty dough out onto a clean, floured surface. Knead by hand 6-8 times, it may be necessary to add additional flour to the surface to keep dough from sticking. Roll into desired shape and thickness. Place rolled dough onto prepared pizza pan, add favorite sauce and toppings. Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes, depending on crust thickness.

Basic Pizza Crust

by Vickilynn Haycraft

*For this one, I followed the directions up to rolling it out and just rolled it directly onto my stone and pan. I used a fork to make holes in lines across and then heated in the preheated ovens for a few minutes before adding the sauce and cheese.*

makes ANY of the following:
• TWO 15 inch thin crust pizzas
• TWO 12 inch thick crust pizzas
• TWO 9 x 13 med-thin rectangular pizzas
• FOUR 10 inch personal pizzas
• SIX 8 inch thin personal pizzas
• SIX 8 inch thin calzones
• TWO dozen small breadsticks

• 1 1/2 cup warm water (100-110 degrees)
• 1 1/2 teaspoon SAF yeast
• 1 tsp. honey
• 1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
• 1/2 tsp. salt
• 3 tablespoons vital gluten (optional)
• 4 cups freshly ground hard whole wheat flour
• Additional flour if necessary

Place warm water in a mixing bowl and add yeast and honey. Stir until dissolved. Let stand 5 - 10 minutes until foamy. This is “proofing” your yeast. (If using SAF yeast, you may skip this step and add all ingredients together)
Add oil, salt vital gluten and 2 cups of flour. Mix well.

Add more flour, one cup at a time mixing well after each addition until dough clings together and you can turn out on a floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and springy about 10-12 minutes by hand or until smooth and springy.

Place dough in a bowl. Rub a little olive oil over the dough, turning to get all sides. Cover the bowl and let dough rise 30 minutes. Punch down, take dough out on a floured surface and divide into desired pieces depending on what size pan and how many pizzas you choose.

Preheat oven to 450. Roll out pizza dough out on the floured surface one inch wider than your pan. Turn the extra inch over towards the center to form a crust and press down to seal. Prick lightly with a fork over the surface of the crust. Bake empty in a 450 for 5 minutes or until just lightly golden, but not brown.
Take pizza crust out of oven. If freezing, place on a cooling rack and allow to cool completely before wrapping and freezing.

If using right away, spread sauce evenly over crust, BE CAREFUL not to use too much sauce as this can cause the crust to become soggy. Add toppings and cheese if desired. bake at 450 for about 10 minutes or until the crust is brown and the toppings are cooked.

***Note, if you prefer and thicker, “breadier” crust, let the dough rise on the stone after shaping until puffy, then pre-bake and finish as directed.
***If you have 2 stones, you can piggy-back rolling, pre-baking and baking your pizzas.
***This works better if you get the metal handles for the pizza stones, it is easier to grab and not squash the crust.
If using a cake pan, jelly roll pan, round metal pizza pan or pizza screen, you may need to brush lightly with olive oil and dust with cornmeal to prevent sticking.
If desired, divide the dough into “personal” size pizzas ( 6 - 8 inches) and allow each family member to create their own pizza with different toppings.
You can also make this dough in an autobakery bread machine. Place ingredients in the bread machine baking pan in the order according to your machine’s manufacturer. Use 4 cups of whole grain flour. Choose “DOUGH” cycle. Check the dough after 5 minutes to make sure it is forming a ball. Adjust with water or flour as needed. and when the machine beep, remove the dough and shape and bake as described above.
Categories: Breads, Main Dishes, Recipes
About the Author

Vickilynn Haycraft
A student of health and nutrition for 30 years, Vickilynn Haycraft has over 20 years of actual hands-on experience reviewing and personally using different tools of the homemaking vocation, focusing on the areas of health and nutrition. Vickilynn is a magazine columnist, product reviewer and cookbook author, as well as being full-time wife and mom to 5 children. Vickilynn blogs at the RFL Blog.

Chocolate Cobbler

Servings: 8

6 tablespoons butter
1 cup self-rising flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
powder 1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups boiling water

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Melt butter in an 8x8 inch baking dish while the oven preheats.
2. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, 3/4 cup sugar, and 1 1/2 tablespoons cocoa. Stir in milk and vanilla until smooth. Spoon this batter over the melted butter in the baking dish.
3. Stir together the remaining cup of sugar and 1/4 cup cocoa powder. Sprinkle over the batter. Slowly pour boiling water over the top of the mixture.
4. Bake for 30 minutes in the preheated oven, until set. Serve slightly warm with ice cream.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2009 Printed from 4/27/2009

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