30 September 2005

Pizza Dough

I used to always go to the pizza dough in a bag from Trader Joe's for $1. But now I do this... it's really pretty easy.

1 pkg yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
1 1/4 c. water (120-130 degrees)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T. olive oil
3 3/4 c. flour
Herbs (optional): a few dashes each of dried basil, rosemary (crunched up) and oregano

Dissolve the yeast in water in a big bowl. Let it hang out for a few minutes and get bubbly. Add salt and olive oil; stir well. Add flour and herbs; mix to combine. Let rise for a few hours.

Divide dough in half (this recipe makes dough for 2 pizzas, or even 3 if you really stretch it). Put some olive oil on your pizza pan (about the size of a half-dollar) and spread it around using the dough. Spread the dough out on the pizza pan using your fingers. Top with your favorite toppings and bake at 450 for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

**You can also use this dough to make calzones, foccacia bread or breadsticks.

26 September 2005

Mrs. Travis's Pumpkin Bars

Mrs. Travis is the guidance counselor at Alma Heights Christian Academy. This is a Sunset magazine recipe from 1967 that she passed on to Ken.

1/2 c. butter (1 stick)
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 egg
3/4 c. canned pumpkin
1 1/2 c. unsifted flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. each ginger, allspice and baking soda
1/2 c. dates or raisins
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
Orange Glaze (recipe to follow)

Cream butter and sugar together. Add egg and pumpkin and beat well (it will look curdled). Blend the flour with the spices and soda and add to the creamed mixture. Add the dates/raisins and nuts; mix until well blended.

Spread evenly in a greased 11x16 pan. Bake at 350 until it begins to pull away from the sides (about 16-18 minutes). Spread with orange glaze. Cool and cut evenly into bars or squares to serve. Makes about 2 dozen.

Orange Glaze:
Blend 1 cup powdered sugar with 3 Tablespoons orange juice concentrate.

(Note to self and rest of world: I think I must have used a 9x13 pan because I don't have an 11x16 pan! You might have to bake it a little longer though..)

24 September 2005

Brilliant Pita Sandwiches

1/2 cucumber, peeled & chopped
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
10-15 kalamata olives, finely chopped
6 basil leaves, finely chopped
6 mint leaves, finely chopped
1/2 c. plain yogurt
juice of 1/2 lemon
4 oz. (1/2 c.) feta cheese, crumbled

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Offer with pitas, lettuce and avocado. This mixture fills 4 half-pitas. (2 servings)

22 September 2005

Mom's Granola

I hope you all know that I never compliment myself, but my friends say I make brilliant food. But I must confess... sometimes I hate Martha. So here's a recipe from MY MOM, the ultimate un-Martha. (Love her!!!)

8 c. oats
3/4 c. honey
1/4 c. olive oil
dried fruits - raisins, apples, dates, berries and/or cranberries
chopped nuts (Mom says go easy on these - they add lots of fat!)

Spread the oats evenly on a cookie sheet. Bake at 300 until lightly toasted. Meanwhile combine honey and olive oil (no need to mix) and warm in microwave or toaster oven (if you are boycotting microwaves like I am).

Dump oats into large bowl. Mix with fruits and nuts. Drizzle honey-oil mixture over oat mixture and stir to combine. Enjoy warm (yummy!) or store in a cool dry place for later use.

(Note: this morning I just used up all the oats I had. Poor Ken was probably tired of oatmeal anyway. I didn't measure it but it covered the cookie sheet about an inch thick with oats. Then I halved the amount of honey and oil - I did 1/2 c. honey and 1/8 c. oil... which now that I think about it is not exactly halving. Oh well.)

06 September 2005


With hurricanes and all, I have ceased to blog about stupid stuff.

For an inside view on the hurricane damage, check out this PCA blogger's pictures.