Thursday, January 26, 2012

World's Best Pizza Dough

We love homemade pizza around here— the Llama Papa and I have been making pizza ever since we first started dating. Over the years I have tweaked the dough to a cross between a classic pizza dough and an herbed focaccia. and it comes out just the way we like it. This makes a wonderfully flavorful thin crust, perfect for all of your favorite toppings.

Awesome Pizza Dough

2 C whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp sugar (I use turbinado)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp granulated garlic
1 Tbsp Mrs Dash Onion & Herb
1 Tbsp rosemary – crushed
1 Tbsp instant yeast

1 C warm water (110°-120°)
1 Tbsp olive oil

Whisk together the dry ingredients. Make a well in the center and pour in your warm water and olive oil. Stir to combine, then dump everything out onto your counter top and knead for about 5 minutes, adding flour as needed to keep it from sticking to the counter or your hands, but not to enough to make the dough stiff. (I always end up with a little dough stuck to my hands, this is fine, you just don't want to be wearing doughy gloves by the time you are done.)

making pizza 1

Form the dough into a ball and plop it into a large greased bowl. (I just give the bowl a spritz of cooking oil, then another quick spritz onto the dough to keep it from drying out.) Cover and let rise in a warm place for about an hour.

making pizza 2

Have all of your toppings ready and your oven pre-heated to about 450° before you start rolling out your dough.

making pizza 4

I toss a little flour on top and roll my dough out on a piece of parchment paper; it makes it much easier to handle, and it's the perfect size for our pizza stone.

making pizza 3

Throw on your favorite toppings, bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese (if you are using it) is bubbly and just starting to brown. Let the pizza cool for about 5-10 minutes before slicing and digging in— otherwise your tongue may be too burnt to taste the yumminess.

making pizza 5

This makes about 8 large pieces.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Veggie Pie

The Llama Papa doesn't really like 'creamy' things and so has never had a classic chicken pot pie or a veggie alternative. But I've had a hankering for one for a while, so I went trolling around for ideas. After a while I came up with this:

veggie pie 1-18-12

Veggie Pie
(with some promising alternate ingredients at the end)

1 double pie crust

1 package extra firm tofu, drained
1 medium onion
4 cloves garlic
2 ribs celery
2 carrots
1 small sweet potato
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup frozen green beans
1 teaspoon rosemary, crushed
1 teaspoon thyme
small bay leaf
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Cut the Tofu into 1 inch pieces and fry them in a saucepan until all sides are browned; set aside.

Saute the onions until translucent; add the garlic and saute a minute more. Add the carrots, celery, and potato, and saute until everything is warmed.

Add the flour and stir until everything is evenly coated.

Add the rest of the ingredients, including the tofu, and simmer for about 15-20 minutes, or until the potato is just soft.


Roll out the double pie crust and line a 9-inch pie plate with one half.

Fill with the vegetable mix and top with the other half; crimp the edges to seal, and slash the top a few times to vent.

Bake for 30 minutes or so until the crust is golden and everything is nice and bubbly.

Slice and enjoy!

As we were eating, we thought of a bunch of other ingredients that would go really well in this pie:

Try replacing the sweet potato with a regular potato, or do both!
Use leeks instead of onions.
Toss in some sliced white button or Baby Bella mushrooms and sweat them before adding the carrots and celery.
Cooked TVP instead of tofu. Or maybe some Tempeh!
Use one carrot and one parsnip instead of just two carrots
add a few cups of a small bean, like pink or red beans

Friday, January 13, 2012

Last Night's Dinner:

sweetpotato peanut soup
(click to see larger)

if you can't read my handwriting:

Sweet Potato and Peanut Soup

1 lg onion
4 cloves garlic
1 Tbsp fresh ginger
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch ground cloves
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
2 lbs sweet potatoes
2 carrots
6 c water or vegetable stock
1 tsp salt
1/2 c chopped peanuts
1/4 c peanut butter

sauté onions until they go translucent, add garlic and sauté a mute more, add everything but peanut butter and bring to a boil. Simmer for 30 minutes or until sweet potato is tender. Puree until smooth. Add peanut butter and whisk to combine.
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