Tag Archives: onion

Homemade Pizza

27 Nov

Homemade pizza. Toppings are bacon, cremini mushrooms and kumato tomatoes.

The following makes two thin crust pizzas. The original recipe can be found in the book “Cooking: A Commonsense Guide”.

Dough

  • 1 sachet dry yeast (about 8 grams)
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup warm water

Two pizza doughs. Roughly shaped into a rectangle.

1. In a small bowl add the yeast, sugar and salt to the warm water. Cover. Leave for ten minutes or until foamy.

2. In a large bowl, add flour and make a well.  Add the yeast mixture to the hole and gradually add flour to yeast mixture to form dough.

3. Place dough on a clean floured surface. Knead the dough for several minutes.

4. Split the dough into two halves. Roll each dough ball into approximately 1/4 inch thickness. (Flour your rolling device, be it a rolling pin, jar, glass tumbler, etc.)

5. On a lined baking sheet, brush 1 tbsp of oil to prevent dough from sticking and to help form a golden crust. Place pizza dough on tray and tuck in edges to form a crust. Repeat for other pizza dough.

Sauce:

  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 14 oz crushed tomatos
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp sugar

Pizza sauce.

1. In a pot, add onions and oil. Cook until onions are soft (about 5 minutes).

2. Add in remaining ingredients. Simmer on low to medium heat until sauce thickens to a consistency similar to pizza sauce (about 15 to 20 minutes).

3. Spread half of the sauce onto each pizza dough.

Pizza dough with sauce.

Assembly:

1. Add a layer of cheese to the pizza and sauce. (I used a mixture of grated cheddar and mozzarella.)

2. Add the toppings of your choice (e.g. pepperoni, pineapple, feta cheese, olives, shrimp, ham, bacon, mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes, onions, ground beef, etc.). TIP: Do not overload pizza with toppings to allow for more even baking in the oven.

3. Top with a light layer of more cheese.

4. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes in a 415º oven or until cheese is melted, bubbling and golden brown.

5. Let cool at least 5 minutes before eating.

Pizza imediately before baking.

Pizza immediately after baking.

The second pizza, which has bacon, green peppers, onions and tomatoes as its toppings.

A special thank you to Andrew who made much of the pizzas.

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Vegetable Soup

2 Oct

Vegetable soup.

Serves 4 to 6.

  • 3 to 4 tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 small carrot, diced
  • 2 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • chicken or vegetable broth
  • water
  • a handful of noodles* (optional)

(Feel free to add other types of vegetables such as celery, flat leaf parsley, corn, potatoes*, etc. Vegetable soup is a good way of clearing the fridge of old or extra vegetables.)

1. Heat a large deep pot on high.

2. Add in oil and onions. When the onions are soft, add in the tomatoes.

3. Cook until the tomatoes are soft and begins to release its juices.

4. Add in the carrots, green peppers, garlic and seasoning (paprika, bay leaf, salt and pepper). Mix well.

5. Add enough broth to cover all the vegetables, then add in an equal amount of water as broth.

6. Once the liquids come to a boil, turn down heat to a gentle simmer.

7. Cook for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the carrots are soft.

8. Then add in the noodles and cook until noodles are soft. The soup is now ready to be served.

*Since noodles and potatoes are starchy, by adding them to the soup, it will thicken the soup and you may wish to add a little more broth or water.

Creamy Chardonnay Sauce with Mushrooms, Bacon and Brie

8 May

Bowtie pasta in a creamy Chardonnay sauce with bacon, mushrooms and topped with slices of brie cheese.

  • 150g bowtie pasta, cook as directed
  • about 10 cremini mushrooms, sliced
  • 3 portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 4 slices  bacon, trim fat, cut into small pieces
  • 1 cup chardonnay 
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup skim milk
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp paprika 
  • 2 to 3 tbsps flour
  • 2 sprigs of green onion, diced (this is mostly for colour)
  • 8 thin slices of brie or camembert

Bacon and onion sauteing.

In a large pot, add in the bacon. Once some of the fat had been rendered, add in the onions. (Remember to trim the bacon before cooking it. You only want a little bit of fat.)  If the bacon sticks to the bottom of the pot, add a few tablespoons of the chardonnay. Cook until the onions are soft, then add in the mushrooms. Mix well and add in the salt, pepper and paprika. Combine well and then add in the remaining chardonnay. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the mushrooms are soft (about 5 to 7 minutes).

Mushrooms, bacon and onions sauteing.

Mushrooms, bacon and onions after sauteing for about 5 minutes.

Creamy chardonnay sauce with bacon and mushrooms.

On a medium low heat, gradually add in the flour (start with 2 tbsps and add more if needed) and mix. The sauce should thicken momentarily.  If the sauce appears watery, add in a little bit more flour. Once the sauce is to an ideal consistency, add in the milk (start with 1/2 cup and add more if the sauce appears too thick) and green onions.  When the sauce begins to bubble, add in the pasta. Thoroughly combine so that each pasta is coated with the sauce.  Dish the pasta onto a serving dish and place a few slices of the brie onto the pasta. By the time you walk from the kitchen to the dinner table, the brie should be slightly melted.

Eat immediately. Serves two. Pair this dish with the same chardonnay used to make the sauce, if so desired.

This recipe was inspired by one I ate at Marbles which had cheese tortellini in a chardonnay cream sauce with mushrooms and garnished with grilled asparagus and slices of camembert. This was such a perfect combination that I had to try a home made version. I added the bacon on impulse but feel free to omit and make it vegetarian friendly. (Sorry there is no picture  of Marbles’ version because I forgot my camera.)

Potato Carrot Soup

19 Oct

A bowl of potato and carrot soup.

  • 1 medium baking potato, peeled and cut into small cubes
  • 1 carrot, peeled and coarsely grated (or substitute with 1 cup of coarsely grated cheddar to make potato cheddar soup)
  • 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 2 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • sea salt and pepper
  • a potato masher

In a pot on high heat, add in the oil, butter and onions.  Cook until the onions are soft, then add in the potatoes and carrots.  Cook for a few minutes during which time the starch from the potatoes will be released and cause sticking.  Add water and seasoning (paprika, dijon mustard, salt, pepper and sugar).   Cook for a few more minutes and then add in the broth. When the liquids begin to boil, turn down the heat to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are fork tender.  With a potato masher, push down on the potatoes until a lumpy mash potato consistency is achieved.  If you like your soup creamy and smooth, use a hand held blender or food processor to achieve your desired consistency.  Lastly add in the milk and simmer until hot.  Serve immediately.