I really do believe that cheese should be its own food group. If I had to eat three types of food for the rest of my life they would be cheese, fruit, and bread, in that order. My one glaring exception: Swiss cheese. When I was very young my father told me the holes were made from hungry mice and I’ve been put off ever since. Silly, but true.
I figured that my first Meatless Monday post should revolve around cheese. A far cry from my Green Juice Detox, this dish isn’t phenomenally healthy but it is no takeout pizza, it is mostly organic, whole wheat, and much, much more delicious!
Disclaimer: When I’m in the kitchen I am the type of cook that follows whims; I’ll chuck lavender in my blueberry jam (tastes wonderful, by the way) and nutmeg (by far my favorite spice) on just about everything. So while I follow some recipes to the letter, most I tweak, but I will let you know when I do!
|Kitchen Aid Mixer, a Cook's Best Friend|
Onto the White Sauce: I chose to follow the basics of this About.com recipe but added my own little twists. I substituted four cloves of fresh garlic minced with my Zyliss Garlic Press. This handy little contraption minces garlic without
|Zyliss Garlic Press|
having to peel the skin off the clove; it saves both time and stink!
I feel like after cooking with garlic my hands smell to high heavens for days! I also added about double of the oregano and sweet basil that the recipe called for. Also another tip: definitely use a whisk! The sauce is really prone to clumping and you want a nice smooth sauce on your pizza. (However, don’t fret too much because a 500-degree oven melts pretty much everything.) I decided to create my own recipe for the toppings.
For the cheese mixture, I blended a log of chopped fresh organic mozzarella with about two cups of ricotta, using the latter as the ‘glue’ for the mozzarella chunks. The fresh cheese will draw flavor from the herbed white sauce and provide an interesting backdrop to the mushrooms and onions!
When caramelizing onions and mushrooms, pour a bit of organic olive oil to coat a wide- bottomed sauté pan (for maximum ‘pan contact’) and heat the oil before adding the chopped vegetables! Reduce the heat to medium or medium-low to prevent the onions from drying out. The liquid from the mushrooms cooking should also help to prevent drying. Stir often to make sure the veggies don’t burn and cook until soft and brown, about 10-15 minutes.
Layer your ingredients on the rolled out whole wheat crust, pop the entire shebang on a pizza stone or an overturned cookie sheet and cook 12-15 minutes or until cheese is melted and the crust is crunchy.
|Mushrooms and Onion Topping, Delicious!|
Tink got to bounce around in the snow outside to cool off after hanging around in a hot kitchen!
|Tink Chasing Snow!|
Don't forget to like, share, and subscribe!