While occasionally our evening meal is premeditated, more often than not, the conversation isn’t sparked until my husband’s phone call that he’s left his office. That gives me about 30-40 minutes to come up with a stroke of genius or panic and get a pizza. We happen to be known for our pizza here in CT, so I don’t feel that bad. As a food writer, though, I do feel some guilt on other occasions that I should be spending more time serving up Chinese, Indian or Greek fare rather than ordering it.
So yesterday I thought about that feeling of simplicity we yearn for after a weekend. You know what I’m saying, right? Monday rolls around and the calendar seems ready for action, but my mind is still laying in the sand, drinking sangria with friends and taking Mo on a scenic hike near the water.
Even though we just had a break from the weekly grind, part of me still wanted that feeling of unscheduled ease. I guess that makes sense why picking up one of Pepe’s famous thin crust pies would be a great go-to solution to start the week. Not this week, though. So to recreate that fun, lightness, I decided to make my own. I didn’t do fancy tricks with the dough (Although it would’ve been fun pulling pieces of it off the ceiling fan!), but I did make it using what I had in the house.
I researched a few different recipes, and while I do have dry active yeast in the pantry for my bread making days, I chose to make a yeast-free version instead. This way, those of you who are playing along may even be more likely to have these ingredients at your disposal. If you’re cooking for gluten-free family members, there are plenty of ways to adjust the crust accordingly using what you have on hand.
I usually make my own sauce, but I discovered a jar of pizza sauce in the cabinet and thought it made sense to clear this off the shelf. While we don’t tend to keep a lot of meat on hand we always have a surplus of soy products. My hubby has learned to accept this fact and has even grown to like many of these options. My vegetarian sausage was the perfect addition to the garlic-sauteed vegetables and shredded mozzarella. Since I’ve learned that wine pairs well with pizza, I poured myself a glass to accompany our meal.
Crisp crust, savory toppings…if this writing career doesn’t take off, I would be a shoo-in at the local pizza joint down the road. Protein, carbs, dairy, veggies, good fat? Check. Check. Check. Check. Check. Looks like we’ve got ourselves dinner!
Now let’s see what happens tomorrow…
2 1/2 cups flour
2 3/4 teaspoons baking powder (if using baking soda use half and omit salt)
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
3/4 to 1 cup water
About 1/2 jar pizza sauce
3/4 package shredded mozzarella
1 cup frozen broccoli florets, chopped
1 1/2 cups frozen chopped spinach
1/2 cup frozen chopped onions
2-3 tablespoons minced garlic
A few tablespoons of olive oil for sauteeing
4 Morningstar Farms veggie sausage patties
Salt and pepper to taste
Crushed red pepper (optional)
Garlic powder (optional)
Parmesan cheese (optional)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees, or use your pizza setting if you have one. Mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
Add oil and water. Stir until it forms a ball, adding more water if dough is stiff.
Knead on a floured surface for 3-4 minutes.
Spread dough onto greased and floured pizza pan. I used a rolling pin to move things along.
Defrost veggies in microwave with a drop of water. Sautee with olive oil and minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper.
Defrost veggie sausage and crumble into pieces by pulling at it with two forks.
Spoon sauce onto crust and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.
Top with sausage and vegetables.
Bake for about 20 minutes, until crust is crisp and cheese is bubbly.
If desired, garnish with crushed red pepper, garlic powder, or parmesan cheese.
Eat and enjoy not having to tip the delivery guy!