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Archive for the ‘Pizzas and more’ Category

There are so many ways to make a pizza. I prefer to make a more “grown up” version but the family still just wants to have plain cheese or cheese and pepperoni. What to do?? I end up making either “shared” pizzas (half & half) or individual ones. As you might know if you have been following my blog, my husband can’t stand when I make a big pepperoni pizza and make a 1/4 of it a banana curry pizza (my favorite) since he might get a little curry on one of his “sides”…

But I get it. If you like something you like something. And people shouldn’t try to fix something that isn’t broken. So, as you might suspect, I eat these myself. Good, more for me.

Lately I have been working on a food project and have had to come up with lot’s of different “comfort foods” that would work in the US. This is one of the dishes I contributed to the project. It is a challenge when you really would like to make it healthier and more “green” (as in more herbs & vegetables) but still make it the same way it always was made. Since I was not brought up on the typical fast food & comfort foods I flunk all the time. I manage to squeeze in the “wrong” ingredients.

“One” is not supposed to add curry (or any other crazy spices or herbs), fruits or berries to a pizza- A pizza should only have tomato sauce, cheese and pepperoni  on it!” my little husband says….

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Orange Walnut Goat cheese Pizza.

Pizza dough.

4-5 small or 2 big yellow onions.

1-2 tbsp. butter.

1 c. goat cheese (the amount is not that important. One package of whatever size you find in the store is fine).

1 orange (grated & squeezed).

1/4 c. finely chopped walnuts.

Sprouts or micro greens for decoration.

1/2-1 tsp. crushed pepper.

Salt to taste.

Directions;

Slice all the onions finely, length wise (cut in half then cut length wise not across).

Fry in a skillet with the butter on medium low heat until caramelized (dark and translucent). This will take some time. You need to be watching the onions since they might burn the second you look away. When nicely caramelized, set aside to cool down.

Roll out the pizza dough into required size (one large round or smaller individual ones).

In a bowl, add goat cheese, orange zest, a splash of the squeezed orange juice,half of the crushed pepper and the crushed walnuts.

Mix well. Taste and see if you need to add more juice, any salt or more pepper.

Spread out all the caremelized onions evenly onto the pizza dough. Top with little dollops of the goat cheese. Bake in a 450-500 F degree (225-250 C ) oven  for about 10-12 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.

When ready, add the micro greens or sprouts, they makes it fresh and “crispy”.

Enjoy!!

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Basic Pizza dough.

3 – 3 1/2 c. flour.
1 tsp. salt.
2 tbsp. olive oil
Pinch of honey or sugar (the honey/sugar is used to help activate the yeast).
1 package dry yeast (1/2 oz) or 1 package ( 1 1/2 oz) fresh yeast .
1 cup warm water (warm not hot since it would ‘kill” the yeast).
Directions;
Combine honey/sugar, water and yeast into a small bowl. Let sit until the yeast has dissolved).
Use a wooden spoon. Combine flour and salt in a large bowl and make a well in the center.
Pour yeast mixture and oil into well and stir in dry ingredients until you have a soft dough.
If dough is too sticky, add a little bit more flour.
Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 8 minutes or until smooth and firm.
Place in an oiled bowl, cover with a towel and let rise until doubled or 45 minutes to an hour.
* If you would like, it is smart to make a couple of batches of pizza dough at the same time and freeze it. If you use frozen dough, take it out the night or two nights before and let it de-frost in the fridge. This way the dough doesn’t become rubbery but nice and “giving”.

 

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Here we go again…

Another Super Bowl game… I had planned to be prepared and know exactly what to serve this year. That didn’t happen. “Something with hotdogs” was the order for this years football finals. Again? Some of the things we did last year were “thin-bread rolls with hotdogs”.

We don’t really eat hotdogs that often since it is one of the most processed foods there is so I rather cook something else. I decided to go with mini versions of pizzas. Everybody loves that so it is an “easy” one. Since I decided a few years back not to fight it for super bowl and just make some home-made fast food my way, it is ok. I can live with it. I actually managed to squeeze in some whole wheat pizza dough for the pizza buns and lot’s of herbs in the crust of the calzones. One does what one can. It is like hiding vegetables from kids.

Instead of eating big slices that drip and are a little harder to handle, I make mini calzones and pizza “buns”.

The recipes are easy . The only “set” measurements are for the dough itself. After that, you just add the amount of topping you like.

Try these mini pizzas and Have a great Super Bowl.

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Mini Calzones.

Pizza dough.

Tomato sauce. A few tablespoons per pizza.

Cheese. I use a mixture of a few different kinds of cheese. Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Mozzarella, Gruyère or just anything you have in the house. About a handful per pizza.

Smoked ham or Canadian bacon. About a handful per pizza.

A pinch of Italian seasoning or dried Thyme and Oregano on the filling. You would need a little more if you add it to the crust.

Directions;

Take the pizza dough. Divide it into portion sizes (the size of a tennis ball or the size of your choice). Roll them out very thinly  (you can add dried herbs to the crust by pressing it in while rolling out the dough). Spread a little tomato sauce onto one half, a couple of tablespoons per pizza. Make sure not to go all the way out into the edge. Place some cut up ham as a “stripe” across the middle of the dough. Add a handful of cheese on top. End with the herbs or seasoning. Fold the “lid” over. Pinch the edges very tight so that the calzone can “puff up”.

Bake in a 450 – 500 F (225-250 C) oven. It will take 5-10 minutes. You should bake them hot and fast. If you have a pizza stone, use that.

Note that you can use any kinds of cheeses and fillings for this pizza. The amount is also up to you. Just don’t over stuff them. They need a little space to be able to “puff up”.

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Place the tomato sauce, ham and cheese horizontally across the dough. Fold over the “lid”. Pinch the edge well so that the calzone is nice and airtight.

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Keep them whole or cut them into halves.

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IMG_2868_2“Pizza Buns”.

Pizza dough.

Tomato sauce.

Pepperoni.

Cheese. I use a mixture of a few kinds. Cheddar, Monterey Jack, Mozzarella, Gruyère or just anything you have in the house. About a handful per pizza.

Directions;

Roll out the pizza dough into a rectangular shape. It should be about 1/4″-3/8″ (about 1/2 cm) thick.

Spread tomato sauce onto the dough as if you were making cinnamon buns. Cut the pepperoni into small pieces. Spread it evenly all over the dough. Use as much as you would like. Add the cheese. Start rolling up the dough from one end to the other (it must be tight so that the filling doesn’t fall out when it is cut up into pieces). Make sure to pinch the end very well so the roll stays closed. Place the dough with the end facing down into the counter. Cut pieces about 3/4″ (2 cm) thick. Place on a baking sheet and bake in a 450 – 500 F (225-250 C) oven. It will take 5-10 minutes. You should bake them hot and fast. If you have a pizza stone, use that.

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Roll up the pizza dough with all the filling just as if you where baking cinnamon buns.

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Cut the pizza roll into pieces.

Basic Pizza dough.

3 – 3 1/2 c. flour.
1 tsp. salt.
2 tbsp. olive oil
Pinch of honey or sugar (the honey/sugar is used to help activate the yeast).
1 package dry yeast (1/2 oz) or 1 package ( 1 1/2 oz) fresh yeast .
1 cup warm water (warm not hot since it would ‘kill” the yeast).
Directions;
Combine honey/sugar, water and yeast into a small bowl. Let sit until the yeast has dissolved).
Use a wooden spoon. Combine flour and salt in a large bowl and make a well in the center.
Pour yeast mixture and oil into well and stir in dry ingredients until you have a soft dough.
If dough is too sticky, add a little bit more flour.
Knead on a lightly floured surface for about 8 minutes or until smooth and firm.
Place in an oiled bowl, cover with a towel and let rise until doubled or 45 minutes to an hour.
* If you would like, it is smart to make a couple of batches of pizza dough at the same time and freeze it. If you use frozen dough, take it out the night or two nights before and let it de-frost in the fridge. This way the dough doesn’t become rubbery but nice and “giving”.

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Enjoy!!

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The pizza I am used to, is a very “thin crusted huge one person pizza.”

My husband was shocked when he saw it in Sweden for the first time. “Are you sure??  Eat the whole thing??”

Let me put it this way, you have to practice, but yes, you have the whole pizza to yourself!!

The crust might be thin but we load it up with toppings.

I have my favorite pizza place “Birka Pizza “and I always order the same thing, a Tropicana with curry, banana, onions, ham and black olives. YUM! Others would say yuck.

I think you really can put anything on a pizza crust, make them any size and really have fun with it.

At home I either bake individual pizzas or make a hug one with sections of toppings. The “rule” though is for my bananas and curry NEVER to touch my husbands pepperoni.

Try my desert blueberry pizza. Great as a snack or desert. Even as a little bite if you get unexpected visitors.

Almost every grocery store sells pizza dough. Fresh or frozen. To save time, just buy that. I buy the frozen whole grain and let it de-frost over night in the fridge.

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Blueberry pizza.

1 package of frozen or fresh pizza dough.

1 cup of frozen or fresh blueberries.

1-3 tbsp. of brown sugar.

A few sprigs of fresh mint.

Directions:

Roll out the pizza dough on a floured surface.

Move it over to a pizza baking sheet. Pour over the blueberries. Note, if you are using frozen ones you don’t have to de-frost them.

Sprinkle over the sugar.

Bake in a 450 degree oven. Bake until  the crust starts to turn slightly golden brown.

Either rip or cut pieces of mint and sprinkle over the pizza.

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Banana pizza.

1 Package of frozen or fresh pizza dough.

1 cup tomato sauce. I make it easy for myself and use spaghetti sauce.

1 cup of shredded cheese. Use your favorite or a mixture of a couple or 3 kinds of cheese. I tend to use a nutty cheese like Jarlsberg, some easy melting cheese like Edam and a sharp one like parmesan or Gruyère. You can also use mozzarella. You can use less or more cheese. Your choice.

1 ripe banana. 

1 tbsp. curry powder.

Pepper to taste.

Fresh basil, julienned (shredded).

Directions:

Roll out the pizza dough on a floured surface.

Move it over to a pizza baking sheet. Add the tomato sauce. Spread it all the way out into edges. Cut the banana in thin slices. Add to pizza. Cover with the cheese. Sprinkle over the curry powder. Bake in a 450 degree oven until the melted cheese is getting nice & brown.

Shred or julienne the basil and add to the pizza.

Enjoy.

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It’s S:t Patrick’s day…

I don’t have much Irish in my repertoire. All I really know, is the beer and the burger I order when I go to an Irish pub.

So I did a little research on Irish food. It turns out, I am closer to the food then I thought.

I just read that Dublin was founded by Scandinavians about 1000 years ago. Really??? I had no idea!! It was a viking settlement.

If I was to mention any Irish dishes, it would be corned beef and cabbage, Shepherd’s pie or something with potatoes. Most likely heavy food.

But I am so wrong. It turns out the Irish do a mean marinated salmon with whiskey, just like the Swedish gravlax, except I marinate mine with cognac. So I think I need to read more about this. It is really interesting.

My mother in law is the Irish cook in my family. She invites the family over for corned beef and cabbage every S:t Patrick’s day. We always look forward to that. Or is it the “brought forwards” we are hoping for??

Like at christmas, there are always leftovers. So instead of me cooking something new, I decided to take care of the leftovers.

Instead of a shepherd’s pie, what about a corned beef pot pie? Super easy and delicious.

Corned beef  pot pie.

Serves 2-4 (depending on bowl size)

2 cups of milk.

1 tbsp. of butter.

1 tbsp. fLour.

1-2 boiled potatoes.

2-4 slices of leftover corned beef.

2-3 tbsp. sliced leftover boiled cabbage.

2-4 tbsp. green peas.

Puff pastry. Enough to cover the oven safe bowls.

1 egg.

Nutmeg, salt & pepper to taste.

Directions:

Make a white/ béchamel sauce. Add flower & butter to a pot. Melt the butter and let the flour mix with the melted butter. Add milk a little at a time. Keep whisking well. Add the peas, nutmeg, salt & pepper (to taste. ) I added hot sauce, but it is up to you how you would like to season your dish. Cut up the potatoes, cabbage and the meat and add to the sauce to just warm through and then put all into oven safe bowls. Pour over the sauce. Take the puff pastry and put on to bowls as “lids” . Nip the edges on to sides of bowls to make sure that the sauce doesn’t bubble out.

Brush with the egg on top of the puff pastry lid for a pretty glossy look.

Bake in the oven on 450 degrees until golden brown.

Well served with a cold beer.

Enjoy.

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So I am not going to lie. I really have no clue about football. To me, football is played with your foot, so there you go. I am lost already at the “gate”… I have never been to a football game.  I would love to go though. I just haven’t gotten around to it.

My husband and I only watch the super bowl. We don’t watch any other games during the year. I guess you can say it is like not reading the whole book, just skipping to the end. We are usually more interested in what to eat then who is playing. It has happened more than once, that we missed the start of the game, because we were in the kitchen. But this year, we will make it. We will watch the whole thing!

It took many years before I caved in to the junk’ish food that has to be served for this event. In the beginning, I tried to cook fancy stuff. Things you needed to really sit down and eat. I know better now. It has to be things that you can eat with your fingers.  But I still try to make it a little “better” for you if possible. It is not what I usually cook, but then again, super bowl only comes around once a year.

Here are some things you could serve for your super bowl party.

Try my version of the “famous” “Thin bread roll”. The Hot dog wrap.

Hot dog wrap.

1 hot dog per wrap.

Lettuce, any kind.

2 small scoops of mashed potatoes per wrap. (If you want less, use less.) About 1 potato per person.

1 tbsp. pickled cucumber relish per wrap (optional).

Ketchup & mustard.

Pepper & BBQ spice.

(Optional- More vegetables for a more healthy wrap.)

Directions;

Make the mashed potatoes.  Fry the hot dogs in a frying pan.

Take the wrap. Put it on the counter. Cut up the lettuce into thin stripes. Add the mashed potatoes to the wrap. About 2 small scoops per wrap.  Add the lettuce. Sprinkle on pepper & BBQ spice or any spice you like. Put the fried hot dog vertically on top. Add ketchup and mustard as per your own taste. Add the cucumber relish in a thin stripe next to the hot dog. Make sure all are lined well since you are going to roll it all up. If you would like to add something more, do so. For example some dressing (like blue cheese or hamburger dressing.) You can also mix the cucumber relish with a little sour cream and mayo to make a mayo cucumber sauce. Wrap it up as you would do a regular wrap.  Cut in half. Enjoy.

For the more “real” food, here are my finger licking, super yummy, moist and delicious ribs.

Ribs.

Ribs. Count about 3-5 ribs per person.

Dry rub. Dried spice mix. Equal amount pepper, dried herbs, dried ginger, garlic powder, paprika. 1 tsp. salt. Optional;  1tsp. cinnamon, 1tsp. Garam Masala, 1tsp. grind coffee beans. Mix all well together. Rub the ribs with the dry rub. Place in an owen safe dish or a foil container. Add the ribs. Cover tight with foil. Make sure it is well secured so no air will zip out. Add to a 250 degree oven. Cook for about 3 hours. When ribs are done, they will look pale, lot’s of liquid will be a t the bottom of the dish. Brush on some BBQ sauce. Let rest a few minutes. Move to a cutting board. Cut the ribs up and place on a platter. Add a bowl of more BBQ sauce on the side. In the summer, I make the ribs like this. I just cut off the cooking time about 1/2 hour and slap them on the grill to brown them and get that BBQ taste. Enjoy.

A good variation for regular or nacho chips, are these home-made chips. Really tasty. And you can spice them up any which way you want.

Home made sweet potato & beet chips.

5 sweet potatoes.

5 red beats.

5 yellow beets (if available).

Salt & pepper.

Optional;

Any favorite spice. Perhaps dried herbs or garlic salt. Your choice.

Directions;

Slice the beets and the sweet potatoes very thinly. Preferably on a mandolin.

Spread the slices out on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Note that they should be in a single layer.

Bake in the oven on 250 degrees for about 30  or until they are totally “dry”. Turn a few times while baking. If you are making the ribs, the chips can bake side by side with the ribs, in the oven.)

Take out, Sprinkle over some salt, pepper and any other spice of your choice.

Enjoy.

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