Monday, June 1, 2009

Pizza Night To Satisfy All Tastebuds ~ Economical

Prepping food in advance can make your busy life so much easier, which in turn, I believe makes the cooking more fun, food tastes better and you have more time together as a family. Not many of us can spend hours in the kichen every day. I like to spend no more than 20-40 mins on any dinner we make.

The kids are home from school early, the sun is shining, it's a splendid 69 degrees in Boston! Always trying to think of new ideas for dinner, or a twist on a regular meal. Today would be a great day for grilling but the grill has to be cleaned for the season, a little behind schedule in the grilling department.

So, what's for dinner tonite? Something to please ever pallete in the house and that is no easy feat here! But not tonite..healthy homemade personal pizza's, breadsticks, and gooey iced cinnamon bread for dessert. Sounds like a lot of carbs I know. But, not to worry the tomato sauce is ALWAYS homemade, the herbs & veggies are fresh!

I have a fantastic ~ authentic ~ recipe from Italy that is so simple, ask us for recipe! You will NEVER buy sauce again! Email: for this recipe

The first pizza we'll make is pretty traditional, then I get gourmet for my tastes! In addition to the pizza's, I always make a separate cookie sheet of bread sticks: the kids like to dip into the red sauce (I sneak pureed veggies into sauce on occassion!) I'll use both white and wheat dough, I'm trying to convert my family to wheat, but haven't convinced them all can get creative with both white and wheat dough though. It is the freshness of the ingredients...dough and toppings that is key to a yummy healthy pizza

Ingredients I like to always have on hand...
~ Frozen 1 pound bags of white, and also wheat dough (I buy... or make.. and freeze a dozen at a time). $1.59/bag (each bag makes 2 large or 3 medium personal pizza's...less expensive if you make dough at home.
~ Mozzerella Cheese, I like PollyO Mozzerella in a 2lb block...freezes well (and slices so easily with a serrated edge knife when partially frozen). THE BEST PART...only $5.00 for 2lb block at BJ's (similar to Costco). I prefer the block because you can slice the cheese to your specification and It always seems fresher than the shredded! JMHO
~Homemade Red Sauce (I always have some in snadwich baggies in the freezer)
~ FRESH, always fresh, BASIL
~Vine Ripened Tomatoes
~Additional toppings: sliced sweet onions or caramelized onions (a little butter in satue pan with sliced onions on low/medium heat for 20 minutes), crispy sauted proscuitto (TIP: ALWAYS buy IMPORTED Proscuitto not domestic there is a significant differance in quality of taste. I buy 1 pound, chop before cooking, and saute. I then divide the sauted proscuitto into little ziplock baggies, you get about 20 baggies per pound... and freeze them as well. (you don't need a lot on a pizza, b/c it is salty but ooooh so tasy!

***With Proscuitto the price of the IMPORTED is up to $20/lb in a specialty store...though remember this pound will make 20 portions that freeze for months..therefore this adds $1 to each pizza. Though in this case it is worth the extra expensive compared to domestic.

I grill pizza dough on stovetop (both sides) before I top with personal choices for toppings. Using a long handled, oven safe, saute pan I place it in the oven to  broil the topping for a few minutes...voila....homemmade pizza.

Sorry to rush, more to follow on homemade pizza's in future blogs