Had a friend and her daughter over for lunch today. While the girls played paper dolls and build-a-bears, my friend and I caught up a bit. She brought a fun salad–chickpeas and thinly sliced apple, all a lovely shade of magenta thanks to the beets she had boiled, peeled, and chopped. A sweet-tart dressing of honey mustard, lemon juice, and olive oil flavored it up. The salad didn’t come from a package; she took the time to put it together.
Knowing the little girls would like pizza, I had rolled out a quick crust and topped it with a sauce of pureed cooked-down tomatoes (with a bit of olive oil, sugar, and Italian seasoning stirred in). Favorite pizza toppings finished it off. It didn’t take that much longer to make than it would have taken to purchase, unwrap, and bake a frozen pizza. And the results were so much better. (Then again, when my immersion blender landed on the floor, splattering tomato sauce on kitchen cupboards and cracking in half, that frozen pizza looked pretty good.) In the end, it wouldn’t have mattered what we ate as the afternoon was about catching up with a friend and watching our daughters play. There is certainly a time for frozen pizza and packaged salad. But if today’s food was that much better because it was homemade and done so with love, we shared more than a morning playdate. We shared a great meal as well.
Homemade Pizza Crust
- 1/2 cup warm water (105°F-155°F)
- 1 teaspoon dry active yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
In small bowl, mix warm water, yeast, and honey; let stand 5 minutes or until bubbly.
In medium bowl, combine flours and salt. With wooden spoon, sir in yeast mixture and oil until combined. Transfer dough to floured surface. Grease bowl. Knead dough until smooth. roll dough into a ball; return it to bowl. Cover with plastic wrap. Let dough rise in warm place 20 minutes or until double in size.
Punch dough down; roll into 12-inch circle. Place on cornmeal-dusted pizza pan. Prebake 5 minutes at 425°F. Top as desired. Bake 10 minutes longer or until crust is lightly browned and toppings are heated through.