Thursday, January 7, 2010

Eat from the Pantry Challenge - Yummy Homemade Pizza & Citrus Spinach Salad

Disclaimer: My husband typed and partially wrote this post. If you note a presence of sarcasm that isn't usually here, that is why. Thanks for he help hubs!

Last night for dinner we had pepperoni and pineapple pizza and citrus spinach salad. I am really enjoying making some of our favorite meals straight from our pantry.

I tried a new recipe for the pizza dough with mixed results. I can't believe that only about a year ago I was scared of yeast and now I'm an old pro at making homemade pizza.

I used the recipe from my Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook Celebrating the Promise edition (the pink ribbon one). The recipe calls for you to do things a little bit differently with adding the flour in the mixer, and while I appreciate the shorter rise time, I had a hard time getting everything to come together. I will probably make this again, but I will modify it to make it easier for me. I think that I will add more of the flour at the beginning.

I love throwing together salads with leftover ingredients, and since I had some spinach left over from our New Year's dinner, I knew it would be great to use for a throw-together spinach salad last night.

When Hubs and I were at Trader Joe's [HEART!] for our epic fail on Saturday, we bought the most wonderful orange I have ever eaten (organic, and only 59 cents!). Wish I had bought a caseload. I begged asked Hubs to save me a segment or two for my salad. He grudgingly agreed, but then fed a segment to the dogs! HMPH!

Citrus Spinach Salad
Serves 1

1 cup spinach, whole leaf, stems removed
2 segments navel orange, pith removed
1 T smoked almonds
1/2 tsp pear white balsamic vinegar

1. Place spinach in a small bowl.
2. Cut orange segment into bite sized pieces.
3. Top with smoke almonds and vinegar.

Pizza Dough
From Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook Celebrating the Promise Edition p. 150

2 1/2 - 3 c. all purpose flour
1 pkg. active dry yeast
1/2 tsp. salt
1 c. warm water (120-130 degrees Fahrenheit)
2 T cooking oil or olive oil

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 1/4 c. of the flour, the yeast, and the salt; add warm water and oil. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Using a wooden spoon, stir in as much of the remaining flour as you can.
2. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough that is smooth and elastic (6-8 minutes total). Divide dough in half, cover; Let rest for 10 minutes.

This is supposed to make 2 pizzas, but because Hubs likes thick pan crusts, I only use it for 1. I have found the miracle trick for making your yeast rise in the winter: Stainless steel nesting bowls. Put the dough in the smaller nesting bowl and put HOT water in the larger bowl. Nest the smaller bowl in the larger bowl and cover with a towel. Make sure to check before the rise is supposed to be done 'cause those suckers get to workin' when they're nice and toasty warm!

No comments: