Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Ah the universally pleasing food - PIZZA! Endless combinations and customizations, that is my favorite part about making pizza. You can make several dough balls and pop them in the freezer, then pull one out and thaw it a few hours before you're ready to get baking! My daughter Olive has a bit of an acid sensitivity so we tend to make a lot of white pizzas with a homemade oil sauce. My favorite white pizza is mozzarella cheese, pine nuts, tomato, and spinach. The below pictured pizza is half pepperoni/cheese, half red onion/tomato/pepperoni



* 1 teaspoon white sugar
* 1 1/2 cups warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
* 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 2 cups whole wheat flour
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Dissolve sugar in the water and sprinkle with yeast. Set aside for 10 minutes to get frothy.

Stir the olive oil and salt into the yeast mixture, then mix in the whole wheat flour and 1 cup of the all-purpose flour until dough starts to come together. Tip dough out onto a surface floured with the remaining all-purpose flour, and knead until all of the flour has been absorbed, and the ball of dough becomes smooth, about 10 minutes. Place dough in an oiled bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover loosely with a towel, and let stand in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

When the dough is doubled, tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and divide into 2 pieces for 2 thin crust, or leave whole to make one thick crust. Form into a tight ball. Let rise for about 45 minutes, until doubled.

Roll out to desired thinness. This recipe makes two thin crust pizzas or one thick. Top as desired.

Bake at 425 15-20 minutes. For extra crispiness put the dough onto the rack while baking.

Pizza Oil-

1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil

1-2 tsp each basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary

1 tsp salt

Store in an airtight jar, let flavors infuse together for several hours. The longer the better! Refrigerate any leftovers.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Iced Pumpkin Cookies

This is the simplest of recipes. I've made these two weeks in a row and they do not last long! I recommend doubling the recipe, which uses up an entire can of pumpkin basically. But if you have other plans for the remainder of the can, by all means stick to the below mentioned

Iced Pumpkin Cookies

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set it aside.

(Here I used my stand mixer but you can use a large bowl with a hand mixer too.) Cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then drizzle glaze with fork. (You can also use a cream cheese frosting for these!)

To Make Glaze: Combine confectioners' sugar, milk, 1 tablespoon melted butter, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add milk as needed, to achieve drizzling consistency.

If I could pay our babysitter in cookies I would!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Pumpkin Walnut Muffins

I would like to give whomever invented this recipe a big smack on the lips. I think you'll agree. This recipe is worth the wait it takes to make it!

Pumpkin Walnut Muffins

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
1/2 cup water
2 cups bread flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups raisins
1 cup chopped walnuts.

In a large bowl mix together the sugar, veggie oil, eggs, pumpkin, and water. Set aside. In another bowl mix together the remaining ingredients. Let stand at room temp for 1 hour.

Scoop into lined or greased muffin tins and bake at 400 for 15 minutes for regular sized muffins, 12-14 minutes for minis.