Friday, May 6, 2016

How I cut Carbs - Pizza Night

Yes, Friday Night is always pizza night in our house.  But now, we cook it at home, either homemade or frozen, doctored up with lots of extra veggies. It saves us a lot of money and we can use reduced fat and organic dairy products as well as the freshest of toppings (including veggie meats if it's a meat free night).

But switching to thin crust (the Chicago Style pizzas are yummy but it's the calorie equivalent of eating a pan of lasagna). we save on fat AND calories.  Cooking it in the cast iron makes for a thin, crispy crust without being tough and if you use some sourdough starter in place of yeast, you'll have a nice yeast free version. This used up a bit of leftover bell pepper and veggie breakfast sausage made out of spices and grains.

Cast Iron Pizza Crust (for one crust)
1 and 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon warm water (about 120 degrees)
1 Tablespoon olive oil (I used>Artisano's butter flavored oil)
1/3 cup cornmeal
Whisk active dry yeast in the warm water and let it sit until the yeast is active, which takes about 10 minutes

Note:To make yeast free version:  replace yeast with 1/2 cup sourdough starter and reduce water to 1/4 cup, adding more flour if needed if dough is "wet"
In medium bowl mix salt and one cup of the flour. Add honey and oil to the yeast/water mixture after the ten minutes are up and whisk well.  Pour this into dry ingredients  (including the cornmeal) and mix briskly with a wooden spoon until ingredients are mixed and the dough looks slightly shaggy but holds a rough doughball shape. If it looks a bit wet, sprinkle in the remaining 1/4 cup flour.
Turn out the board dusted with a little flour and knead until the dough is smooth and pliable, about 4 minutes. Place the dough in an lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat, and let it sit, covered in a warm place for 1 and 1⁄2  hours (until double in size). If using wild yeast sourdough starter, you may have to double the rise time. Roll  or pat out  (this is a really easy dough to form)  to be slightly larger than your seasoned and lightly oiled cast iron pan (mine is 12 inches) and transfer to the pan, building up the edge slightly.
Top with a cup of jarred or homemade red pasta sauce (just enough to lightly cover the crust, a big handful of  veggie sausage (use remaining sausage in a breakfast dish tomorrow), and any little bits of chopped red/green/orange peppers you might have on hand and a couple handfuls of Mozzarella.  Place pan with crust on stove burner on medium/high for 3 minutes then transfer  hot pan to 450  F. degree oven and bake until edges are  lightly golden and cheese is melted  11-13 minutes (check it at 10 minutes though, some ovens bake hotter).  This ensures a nice crisp crust on the bottom and the pan is the perfect temperature for quick, even heating in the oven.

5 comments:

  1. That sounds really good. I love your pictures. I will have to make some cuz I LOVE pizza too.

    Diana

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  2. Hari OM
    HAH - would ya believe I did home-made pizza last night?! I use my chapatti recipe (Atta and water) and add a cup of plain curd to give it the softness and 'lift'... there's just something so satisfying about knowing exactly what went on there, heh na?
    Eyes-on... YAM xx

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  3. Today is day 50 without dairy (and the other things I cut). Pizza is a food I miss terribly and am a little sad about it as I am in Chicago Memorial Day weekend and was totally looking forward to a deep dish pizza!

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  4. Delicious and more healthy - winner!

    C

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Thanks for visiting. Having been fortunate enough not to have to diet as a young woman - hitting middle age to find my Metabolism moved to Aruba and didn't even send a postcard was a rude awakening. Thanks for sharing the fun and the pain of getting back in shape. Note: If you are a stranger and include a link in your comment - it will not be posted, to ensure no SPAM or viruses are shared. Any link I post is tested first.