GFGL RECIPE BLOG: Leaning Morals of Pizza

By: ALEXIS BLANDINE

Have you ever heard that song, “when the moon hits your eye, like a big pizza pie, that’s amore” ? Well if you haven’t, climb out of the hole you’ve been living in and listen to some Dean Martin. If you’re not a part of this minority, read on.

I have been spoiled with the tastes of many types of pizza: The likes of New York, Chicago, Italy, and my mother’s kitchen, and I must say, the last two take my heart for greatest pie. It’s not that I don’t like the other pies, but there’s a certain bit of satisfaction that you get from knowing the exact ingredients going into your meal that makes it just a little bit better, and you just can’t beat real Italian pizza. It also makes me feel guilt-free about eating pizza, because I have the power to make it healthier, and not changes my morals, or standards of what I want to fuel my body with.

When I make my pizza, I start with a simple crust that consists of 4 things: water, flour, self-rising yeast, and salt. I know you think “who has time to make pizza dough?” but it’s honestly one of the easiest things to make that make such a difference in the whole product. I can say this because I have eaten a good portion of that product and I just came back from an hour long guilt run to show for it (all that cheese that was haunting me in my sleep).

Quick-and-Easy Pizza Dough (can be found on the back of most yeast packets)

2 ½ – 3 C AP flour
1 envelope pizza crust (I used Fleishmann’s)
¾ tsp salt
1 C very warm water
2 T Olive oil (vegetable works too)

    1. Combine all ingredients (stir in enough flour to make the dough soft) until surface is smooth and elastic. Depending on yeast, let it rest for 10 minutes (Pizza yeast doesn’t need time to rest).
    2. Oil the pan you plan to use and spread dough on.
    3. Bake a few minutes at 400 F for a crispier crust (my preference), or put toppings right on for a “fluffier” and thicker crust.
    4. Dough can also be frozen for up to 6 months, to be used at a later time.

But, if you have a pizza craving, and not enough time to wait around your kitchen, tapping your foot as the yeast creates carbon dioxide from consumption of… Sorry, *nerdy girl rant*. I’m back. Basically if you are just too impatient to wait, I have some alterations that you could use:

English muffins, bagels, pita-basically anything with starch that can hold the toppings (I tried tortillas once, they’re better for a pizza wrap than an actual pizza) is a good choice. Boboli also has pizza crusts of different sizes that are so easy to prepare. Then after that it’s really up to you-the toppings are endless. I would, however, suggest you have a few staples to go off from-salt, pepper, olive oil, and cheese (mozzarella, ricotta, etc). I am not a huge tomato sauce fan where I like my pizza dripping in it, but I have noticed that tomatoes give the same effect without the tang that the acidic tomato sauce sometimes give. However, if you have been following my rants, I mean, recipes, the basil pesto is is the best marriage to any pizza, in my opinion (also to my spoon, but again that’s just me being gluttonous). Some toppings that I’ve come across that work: broccoli, spinach, shredded onion or brussel sprouts, I know–adventurous. Then the standard bacon, pepperoni, pancetta, ground beef, chicken, and sausage for the carnivores of the world. Also, pineapple, works wonders on a pizza. It’s sweet, and a little juicy so when you bite into it, it’s like your pizza is saying “surprise! The real party has arrived, island style”.

Some ideas if you aren’t in the mood to go raiding your cabinets for pizza pairings:

Please Me Pesto Pizza



½ -1 C pesto
1 C tomatoes, chopped
1 ½ C mozzarella cheese, part skim
½ C ricotta cheese
¼ C olive oil
salt/pepper to taste
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ C roasted red peppers, sliced (optional)

  1. Evenly distribute all toppings on the crust in order that they appear. Any additional toppings, like the peppers should be added under the final layer of mozzarella cheese.
  2. For best results, drop ricotta cheese in dollops across crust.
  3. Drizzle olive oil across the top if pizza is too dry.
  4. Bake 15-20 minutes in 350 F oven, or until cheese becomes a bubbly, golden brown.

Buffalo Chicka-Chicken Yeah Pizza


1 ½ C mozzarella cheese
3-4 grilled chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
½ C buffalo flavored hot sauce
¾ C blue cheese
½ C blue cheese dressing
½  C caramelized onions (optional)
salt/pepper to taste

  1. Put half the cheese down on the crust, then all the toppings, sauces, and dressings, the top with the rest of the mozzarella cheese.
  2. Bake 15-20 minutes in 350 F oven, or until cheese becomes a bubbly, golden brown.

The buffalo chicken is one of my absolute favorites, makes me feel like I’m indulging in some hot wings, without the guilt of eating those little calorie packed wings (100 calories a wing!! It kills me!)
Now, go be creative, and watch out for those pizzas- my good friend Dean once told me they often go for the eyes…

Sealed with a kiss of nutella,
Alexis

Photo Credit

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Categories: GFGL Recipe Blog, Home, Sections

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