Well, Italy lost today to Costa Rica (0-1). Sorry, guys! Why don’t we have some comfort food to help with the agony? Let’s make it a little healthy, too, so we don’t drown our sorrows in too much fat.
Good news! We don’t even need to knead the dough. The bread machine can do that for us. Also, you can choose your own toppings.
The colors of the Italian flag make me think of pizza: the red of the tomato sauce, the white of the cheese, and the green of the green peppers or fresh basil. Yum!
Veggie Pizza Recipe
Ingredients for the crust
1 1/2 cup warm water
2 Tbl. olive oil
2 tsp. salt
4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. sugar
2 tsp. yeast
Dump all the ingredients in the order given into your bread machine. Remember, salt and yeast should never meet. Yeast and sugar should be hanging out together. Sugar helps the yeast work its magic. Salt hinders it.
Set your bread machine on “Dough” and press “Start.” On my machine, it takes 1 hr 20 min. Set it and forget it. Well, for one hour.
I set my kitchen timer for one hour and I return to chop the veggies and pre-heat the oven during the last 20 minutes of the dough cycle.
Once the dough is done, I get some oil out and spray two pans – a round pizza pan and a regular oven pan (cookie sheet).
I also spray my hands with oil before I grab the dough out of the bread machine.
This dough makes a 2 lb. pizza dough, so you will be able to feed 6-8 people, depending on how hungry everybody is and if you have any appetizers for your meal.
If you have never had rectangular pizza before, you are in for a treat. You can still cut it in triangles, of course. Or cut it in smaller rectangles. The kids will love the variety.
Break the dough in two and press it into each pan starting in the middle. I don’t roll it out or twirl it on my finger tips. Sorry for disappointing you. It takes me about a minute to press it down and fit it into each pan.
If you like deep-dish pizza, you can use pie shells.
Ingredients for toppings
Tomato sauce of your choice (a 14-16 oz. jar should be more than sufficient)
Italian cheese blends of your choice, shredded (2-3 cups, depending on how cheesy you want it)
Fresh onion, tomatoes, peppers, banana peppers, artichoke, olives and whatever else you feel like
If texture is an issue for your children, you can simply have a cheese pizza. Spread the tomato sauce evenly on the two crusts, then the cheese. Not as healthy, but you get some calories in them, right?
If using the vegetables, spread the tomato sauce first, then all the toppings, then the cheese.
Bake at 400F for 20 minutes. Ovens are different. You may want to keep an eye on your pizza when you make it for the first time.
Enjoy your pizza with a glass of grape juice or, better yet, V-8! That way you can sneak some vegetables into your children’s diet.
Here’s hoping Italy wins next time!