Things I pulled out of my purse this morning: one small mitten, chopsticks, a crab bath toy, a rainbow-colored bracelet, a baggie of crayons, oh, and a surprisingly big rock. A rock? I wondered why my purse was so heavy. That one for sure has Katelyn written all over it. After my amusement of what I had been collecting without my knowledge, I realized I did not have my grocery list. Darn. I hate it when that happens. I was for sure not dragging Katelyn out again, and I couldn’t remember the ingredients for this new dish I’m experimenting with, so I’ll have to find something else to make tonight. Think I’ll go with my standby of homemade pizza.
Pretend you are at an Italian restaurant, browsing the gourmet pizza selection. One offering that catches your eye reads, “Whole wheat crust with rosemary, topped with skim mozzarella, marinated artichoke hearts, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, yellow bell pepper and black olives.” You would so pay like 18 bucks for that pizza. That’s what we had at my house tonight, minus the $18 price tag which by the way, wouldn’t have included tax and tip. Of course, this doesn’t include the chunky vegetable salad we had, featuring cucumbers, yellow bell peppers, shaved sweet onions and olives, dressed with a homemade lemon dressing. I had all of these ingredients on hand. I looked at what I needed to use up, and created a really nice, healthy meal for my family.
Homemade pizza is such a great budget meal if you make your own crust, marinara, and buy your cheese on sale. I didn’t have enough mozzarella cheese for two pizzas, so I made one with half mozzarella, half sharp cheddar. Boy was that good. The dough needs to rise in two stages, totaling about two hours. Remember that dough should not be too sticky, but on the other hand, adding too much flour will make the dough tough and dry. Check out these tips if you have never made dough before. This recipe can be used to make bread sticks too.
Light Wheat Pizza Crust
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 1/2 cups warm water
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
In a large bowl, dissolve sugar in warm water. Sprinkle yeast over the top, and let stand for about 10 minutes. Stir the oil and salt into the yeast mixture, then mix in the whole wheat flour and 1 1/ 2 cups of white flour until dough starts to come together. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Dust with flour and knead until smooth, using the other 1/2 cup white flour as needed. Cover with towel, and let stand until doubled, about an hour. When the dough is doubled, divide into 2 pieces for 2 thinner crust, or leave whole to make one thick crust. Form into a ball and let rise about 40 minutes, until doubled.
Preheat the oven to 425. Roll dough and place in an oiled pan or on a pizza stone. Top pizza and bake.