Friday, April 9, 2010

Pizza Tonight!!

Today was a pretty low-key day spent cleaning and organizing my kitchen.  Cassie and Nathan had history play practice while Elijah and Moriah spent their day playing and watching movies, enjoying their spring vacation.  We have been so busy lately that we decided that tonight would be family night.  Tonight was also pizza night.  We rented a movie to watch with the kids, and then we watched Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (anybody else out there like this new show?).

We all decided a couple of weeks ago that it would be nice to have specific dinners on specific days of the week.  I think things are so hectic in our lives that it's nice to have something "set" to count on, so the kids decided they want Friday nights to be "Pizza Night" and Monday nights to be "Fish Night."  It sounds like something fun to try, so we're doing it for now.

Using Sarah's GF Whole-Grain All-Purpose Flour Mix and slightly altering a recipe from King Arthur Flour for gluten free pizza crust, we have a winner here, folks.  My family loves this recipe, enough to eat it every Friday night!  First, check out these cool pictures.  Moriah and Elijah got so excited, asking if I would please post pictures of their personal pizzas tonight.  For your viewing pleasure, we have:
Moriah's personal pizza, featuring black olive "glasses" and "nose," zucchini "eyes," and a pepperoni "mouth."  She said, "Look, Mommy, I made you!"
 Then we have Elijah's creative masterpiece.  Pepperoncini peppers for "eyes, nose, and mouth" and sun-dried tomatoes for "ears and a chin!"  He also used black olives, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese.
Finally, there's mine.  I used sun-dried tomatoes, black olives, zucchini slices, and pepperoncini peppers.  I topped it all off with dabs of my Dairy-Free Cheeze Dip I didn't use the chopped chiles, to make it less "nacho" flavored for the pizza).  Mmm.
The other kids are too old to think it's "cool" to play with your food and post pictures of it on Mom's blog!

Gluten-Free, Whole-Grain Pizza Crust  (serves 4-6, makes 1 pizza 10" to 14")

1 1/2 c. Sarah's GF Whole-Grain All-Purpose Flour Mix
2 Tbs. blanched almond flour
1 Tbs. sugar or honey
1 t. baking powder
3/4 t. salt
1 t. xanthan gum
1 1/2 t. instant yeast
1 c. warm water
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. dried basil

First, thoroughly mix all the dry ingredients except the yeast in your mixer bowl.  If you are using honey instead of sugar, add it to the liquid ingredients in the next step.  Then, mix your liquid ingredients along with the yeast and 1/2 c. of the dry ingredient mixture in a small bowl.  You don't need to mix this hard, just enough to get the yeast spread around in the liquid.  Let your liquid mixture sit until it is all foamy (up to 30 minutes). 

Using your stand or electric mixer, beat the liquid mixture into the dry, adding it in small amounts and mixing until it's all mixed in.  Beat on medium-high for 3-4 minutes.  The texture of your dough will not be like traditional pizza dough.  It's not going to be springy.  It will be kind of sticky-gooey.  Leaving the dough in the mixer bowl, cover and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.

Next, dip a plastic spatula/scraper in a bowl of water, and use it to scrape the dough out of the bowl onto a parchment lined cookie sheet or pizza pan.  You can try oiling your cookie sheet, but it has been my experience that oiling just doesn't keep the dough from sticking enough for us.  In fact, I line my cookie sheets with parchment paper almost every time I bake because of the tendency for gluten-free flours to stick. Note:  My kids like it when I divide the dough into personal pizzas, with their own little cookie sheets.

Continue to dip your spatula in the water as needed to keep the dough from sticking to it as you spread the dough to the desired shape and thickness.  We prefer thinner crust, so we spread it to about 1/4" thickness.  Allow your crust to sit and rest another 15 minutes, uncovered this time.  While your crust sits, preheat your oven to 425 F.

Bake your crust to set it.  This can take up to 10 minutes, but it all depends on how thick your crust is and how big your pizza(s) is/are.  For instance, if you are doing personal pizzas, it might not take as long since they are much smaller than one big pizza.  Our crust is usually pretty thin, so it takes around 8 minutes, but it takes a little less time if we are doing personal pizzas.  If you make a really thick crust, it might take longer than 10 minutes.  You'll have to look at it and kind of see what you think.  Is it firm enough to put your toppings on without making it gooey?  You don't want it completely done, yet, either.

Take your crust out of the oven and put your toppings on.  Bake it some more until the dough is done and the toppings are cooked to your liking.  Again, it depends on the thickness of your crust, the size of your pizza(s), and the toppings you have put on.  This can take 8-15 minutes.

Take your pizza out of the oven, cut it with a pizza cutter, and serve.  Enjoy!

We always double this recipe since I have 3 teenagers at home.  We never have leftovers!

What about you?  Do you have any weekly or monthly family meal traditions, some set schedule that helps your life be less hectic?  Leave a comment, if you do.  Tell me about it.

1 comment:

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) said...

Thanks so much for coming out of the woodwork and commenting on my blog! Glad that i can be of use/help to you with my recipes and everything.

As for the Manitoba Harvest Hemp..I have heard good things bout it. Scared off after too many "dirt like" attempts with other brands...basically hemp and pea both are sooo earthy but given your child eats this one and is fine with it, it may be worth a whirl. Thank you!