My boyfriend and I are fearless eaters. And I don’t mean fearless in an Anthony Bourdain sort of way. We’re fearless in that we’re not afraid of what other patrons may think of us when we clean out the buffet table. We both love food, and needless to say, we eat a lot.
I was doing some math in my head the other day, figuring out how much we actually spend on food every month (I must have been running because there’s really nothing else to do than some random, mental calculation) and the amount came out astronomical. I couldn’t believe how much money we were eating away! This reckless spending had to stop!
As a cost saving measure, we’ve decided to make Thursday our “Dinner at Home” night, where we would cook at home. The dinner doesn’t have to be anything fancy as long as it’s economical, quick and fun, like the homemade pizza we made the other night.
For the pizza dough, we used the pre-made ones I picked up from Trader Joe’s. I purchased two – one herb and garlic, and the other wheat. We made the traditional one (pictured above) using the wheat dough. We spread marinara sauce on the dough, and piled it with mozzarella cheese, parsley, sliced red onions, tomatoes (fresh from my mother’s garden), and prosciutto ham.
We made the Fancy Pizza, pictured above, (there’s really no particular reason for this naming other than that it was slightly fancier than the other, more traditional kind) using the herb dough, and here’s the recipe for it:
package of already-made pizza dough (Trader Joe’s has them in the cheese/ham section)
3 large yellow onions, finely sliced
cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup white wine (I used the leftover Pinot Grigio)
3 Stuffing Portabello Mushroom, sliced (they’re slightly smaller than Portobello but larger than Porcini)
1/2 cup spinach, sautéed
1 cup marinara sauce
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded (not the fresh kind, it wets the dough too much)
1/2 cup goat cheese
3 tablespoons Sun Dried Tomato Bruschetta (optional)
① Roll the pizza dough on a well-floured working surface to a desired shape and size. We made ours rectangular to fit the baking pan. Rolling the dough is not as easy as it looks since the dough is very elasticy and bounces back easily. If you can, pick up the dough and stretch it in air. You don’t need to toss it in the air like Italians do but the weight of the dough will stretch itself out when you pick it up.
② Sautee sliced onion and chopped garlic with olive oil in low heat. Add white white and cook until the onion is clear and caramelized and the liquid has evaporated, about 30 minutes. I recommend using Le Cruset if you have one for even heating. I know this is a long time to baby the onion but it’s worth it!
③ Remove the sautéed onion onto a seperate plate
④ Sautee the spinach in the same pan, for about 30 seconds until it wilts slightly
⑤ Layer the pizza dough in this order: ①marinara sauce, ②mozzarella cheese, ③sautéed onion, ④portabello mushroom, ⑤sautéed spinach, ⑥goat cheese, and ⑦ tomato bruschetta.
⑥ Bake in 450 degree F for about 20 minutes, until the cheese is melt golden brown and the dough is cooked through.
We washed down the pizza goodness with Napa River Merlot I picked up from Trader Joe’s for like $4.99. We can’t beat that price, for sure! I thought the pizzas were delicious. I liked the Fancy Pizza better but surprisingly, the traditional one was more popular. It’s amazing how great the caramelized onion and goat cheese go so well together!
have you ever used the Pizza stone? It makes the Pizza crispier and it cooks faster.
Hi Mel! Thanks for stopping by!
No, I don’t have the Pizza Stone but that sounds like something that would help rescue me from mushy dough! I love those crispy pizzas! Thanks for the info — I’m going to check it out!
Next time you do pizza (or anything for that matter..) please save me a piece/slice and invite me or freeze it for meee!
It’s always after the fact so I always regret not visiting you!!! (Or call me 911 and I’ll be right over with a nice wine 🙂
p.s. Pizza stone is great. Even when I do dough, frozen pizza or give cold delivery a kick, the pizza stone really make it yummier. I think it generates the heat evenly and steadily, and heats up the crust as well as melting the cheese. Calzones came out great on it, too.
You should come by on Thursdays — that’s when Kevin and I cook. It’s truly a collaboration. I usually do the vegetable dishes and he takes care of the meat. We made pork chops the other night and they were gooood. I’ll post some pictures of it soon. I’m thinking about doing braised short rib like the one I had at Roy’s with my Le Cruset dutch oven so I’ll let you know!
Wow, pizza stone sounds like a good buy!
where on thursdays? i might pop in 😛
yea the pizza stone is really reasonable… i got mine plus the pizza cutter for like $19.99. and you can serve it that way and keep the pizza warm the whole time.
and i have to take you to this amazing brazilian cafe at the fairfax farmers market!