Tomato and Basil Pizza

Pizza is still a weekly meal at our house, I just haven’t posted a new one to the blog in awhile.  This pizza creation came about because I had crazy amounts of basil growing in my garden and my mom gave me a couple tomatoes from her garden.  I love summer!

Tomato and Basil Pizza

pizza dough

olive oil to brush on crust

2 small cloves of garlic, minced and mashed up with a little salt

2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced

cracked black pepper

1/4 cup whole basil leaves, chopped

1 cup mozzarella cheese, grated

Once I rolled out the dough, I brushed it all over with the oil and garlic.  Then I placed the tomato slices all over and topped them with black pepper.  Next, I sprinkled on the basil and cheese.

I baked the pizza for 15-20 minutes on the lowest rack of a 450 degree oven.  Yum!

White Pizza

We have made it a tradition to have homemade pizza every Friday night and the topping can vary greatly.  We enjoy pepperoni, sausage, ham and pineapple, buffalo chicken, bbq chicken or pork with jalapeno and red onion, and various others.  But they all contain meat and that’s a no go for us on Fridays during lent.  So, I was very happy to see this white pizza recipe over on Pink Parsley.  I’m sure we’ll enjoy it long after lent too.

Sorry about the terrible picture!

White Pizza

Source:  Pink Parsley

Ingredients:

Pizza Dough – I follow the instructions on Fleishmann’s no-rise pizza dough yeast, posted about here

White Sauce

  • 1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs heavy cream
  • 1/2 large egg yolk
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • pinch cayenne pepper
  • pinch nutmeg
  • 1 tsp minced fresh oregano – I used dried
  • 1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme leaves – I omitted
  • 1 scallion, minced, plus more for garnish – I omitted

Topping

  • 1/4 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup shredded whole milk mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded Pecorino-Romano cheese

For the sauce: Whisk all the ingredients together in a medium bowl.  Set aside.

To bake the pizza:
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees, and adjust the oven rack to the lowest position.

Coat the dough with flour and flatten into a 12-inch disk.  Use a rolling pin if necessary.  Transfer to a pizza pan.

Brush the outer edge of the dough with olive oil.  Use a spatula to spread the white sauce over the dough, leaving a 1/4-inch border around the outside.  Sprinkle the Pecorino cheese over the white sauce, followed by the mozzarella.  Using a 1/2-teaspoon measuring spoon, drop the ricotta over the mozzarella.

Bake 10-12 minutes, or until the cheese is melted, browned, and bubbly, rotating the pizza halfway through.  Remove the pizza and sprinkle with the reserved scallions.  Allow to cool 5-10 minutes before serving.

Pepperoni Pizza Puffs

As if we don’t eat enough regular homemade pizza as it is, we also enjoy pizza dip and now these pizza puffs.  We LOVE pizza!  You should definitely give these a try for your next party.  They are so easy and really tasty!

Pepperoni Pizza Puffs

{source:  seen @ Delicious Meliscious, originally from Every Day with Rachael Ray}

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)
  • 4 ounces pepperoni, cut into small cubes (about 1 cup)
  • 1/2 cup store-bought pizza sauce
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil- I omitted

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Grease a 24-cup mini-muffin pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder; whisk in the milk and egg. Stir in the mozzarella and pepperoni; let stand for 10 minutes.
  2. Stir the batter and divide among the mini-muffin cups. Bake until puffed and golden, 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, microwave the pizza sauce until warmed through, then stir in 1 tablespoon basil. Sprinkle the puffs with the remaining 1 tablespoon basil. Serve the puffs with the pizza sauce for dipping.

Frozen Assets
Freeze the baked puffs in a single layer on a baking sheet, then transfer to a freezer bag. To reheat, bake the frozen puffs on a baking sheet in a 350° oven for 8 to 10 minutes.

Hawaiian Pizza

This is kind of a no brainer recipe, but I felt like I needed to post something since I haven’t been posting as much lately as I used to.  Tim was out of town all last week and this is all I cooked while he was gone.  I made it Monday night and cut it into 8 slices and was able to eat the leftovers for dinners and lunches through Thursday!  It was so strange to not have to cook for so long.  It would have been a completely different story if he was here!  That pizza would have been gone the same night I made it!  On Wednesday, Tim and I even had a laugh over the phone about how long food lasts when he’s not here!  He knows he’s a food disposal!

Hawaiian Pizza

yield: 8 large  slices, serves 2-8 depending on appetites!

Ingredients:

1 recipe pizza dough {and ingredients to prepare it as directed on back of package}

about 1/3 cup pizza sauce

about 1 cup chopped ham {I used left over spiral sliced baked ham, but any deli ham will work}

6-7 slices of canned pineapple that has been really well drained

sliced green onion {I think I used 2 or 3} – optional

8 oz. mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Prepare dough as directed on back of the package of yeast and shape into a large circle on a pizza pan.  Spread with pizza sauce.  Top with sliced ham, rings of pineapple, chopped onion, and cheese.

Bake for about 15 minutes {+/-} or until golden brown.

Let cool 5-10 minutes, then slice and serve.

Hot Pizza Dip

Update 9-9-10:  added pictures 🙂

This was a new recipe that I made for the first time at my sister’s baby shower and I thought it was wonderful.  In the future it will definitely be a party staple just like the famous buffalo chicken dip.  Tim quickly gobbled up the leftover dip after the party!

The recipe says that you can heat it in the microwave for 5 minutes.  But I made it in advance and kept it in fridge overnight.  Then before serving, I baked it at 375 degrees {uncovered} for 20-25 minutes.

Hot Pizza Dip

{source:  allrecipes.com}

Ingredients

1 {8 ounce} package cream cheese, softened

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp dried parsley

1/4 tsp dried basil

1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese {I used 1/2 monterey jack and 1/2 mozzarella}

1 cup grated parm cheese

1 cup pizza sauce or tomato sauce

2 tablespoons chopped green bell peppers – I have omitted before and have also substituted sliced jalapeno

2 ounces turkey pepperoni, chopped

2 tablespoons sliced black olives

Directions

In a small bowl, mix together the cream cheese and dried spices.

Spread mixture in the bottom of a 9″ pie plate that is microwave/oven safe.

Sprinkle 1/2 cup of mozz and 1/2 cup parm on top of cream cheese.  Spread pizza sauce over all.  Sprinkle with pepperoni, olives, and peppers.  Then top with remaining 1/2 cup cheese.

Cover and microwave for 5 minutes.  Serve HOT with crackers, Italian bread, crusty french bread, or tortilla chips.

Pesto

Finally!  I found one lonely package of basil at the store.   I guess I have never tried to buy basil at the store before {especially in the winter} because I grow my own in the summer.  It is one of the few herbs I can successfully grow in my garden!

Anywho, I was finally able to make a batch of pesto that I have been craving for a few weeks!  I love to use pesto to just simply coat some pasta for a vegetarian meal as I am showing here {gnocchi}.  You can add grilled chicken breasts to the pasta if you chose, but it is definitely wonderful without.  Pizza sauce is another great use for pesto.  And also, the pasta with pesto is great hot or cold.  Enjoy!

Pesto

1 slightly packed cup of basil leaves

2 peeled garlic cloves

1/2 cup pine nuts

1/2 – 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

salt and a lot of black pepper

1/3 cup EVOO

Process the garlic, nuts, and basil in a food processor to make a paste.  Add the cheese and s&p and process some more.  Then stream in the EVOO while the processor is on.  Taste and adjust as needed with more s&p if needed.

If using as a pasta sauce, reserve some of the pasta’s cooking water to add as needed when mixing the pasta with the pesto.  It just makes for a smoother and evenly coated pasta dish.

Pizza Pasta Bake

This is a homemade version of a meal I prepared all the time while I was in college.  The meal I made at that time, came in a box and you just boiled the pasta, then stirred in the meat sauce, sprinkled on cheese from a packet and baked it. {*cough*Banquet Homestyle Bakes*cough*} I thought it was fantastic at the time and it easily served myself and my 3 roommates.  But looking back now, I’m sure it was full of preservatives and other “fake” ingredients.

So with this homemade version, I still get to take a trip down memory lane to my college days, but I feel better knowing what ingredients go into the meal.

Pizza Pasta Bake

Ingredients

1/2 pound ground beef {or ground sausage or turkey}

1/2 package of turkey pepperoni, coarsely chopped

1 small onion, chopped

2 jalapeno peppers, chopped

1/2 green bell pepper, chopped

dash of red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp dried oregano

1 cup tomato sauce {homemade sauce recipe found here}

2 Tbsp water

approx 1 heaping cup dry short pasta such as elbow macaroni {Sorry measurement is vague, but I just used 3 handfuls of macaroni – just call me Rachel Ray I guess!}

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided

Directions

Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly spray a baking dish and set aside.

Boil water and cook pasta.

Meanwhile, brown the ground beef in a large skillet with the onion and peppers.   Cook until beef is no longer pink, then drain.  Return to skillet {off heat} and stir in the pepperoni, seasonings, 2 Tbsp cheese, tomato sauce, water, and cooked pasta.  Stir everything together and spread into prepared baking dish.  Top with the remaining cheese.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until hot and bubbly.

Serves 4

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