PIZZA? Breakfast Pizza!- Recipe

This past weekend I woke up Sunday morning and for some odd reason I had one thing on my mind… PIZZA! Breakfast pizza, to be exact. It was breakfast time after all. And though there are literally a slew of places in my Los Feliz neighborhood where one can go and get breakfast pizza, my craving was very specific. I didn’t just want to EAT Breakfast Pizza, I wanted to MAKE Breakfast Pizza.

Mind you – I have never actually made Breakfast Pizza before. For real! I mean, sure I have made Breakfast, and I guess I occasionally make a pizza here and there. But I had never before made Breakfast Pizza. And it was time! Here is the secret that I will share with all of you – I didn’t have all of the proper ingredients, I was fully unprepared, but the ingredients for this recipe are so basic that it didn’t matter. And the best thing about the recipe is that you can do whatever you want.

Now, there are some rules that you have to follow pretty closely when making the crust, so don’t get me wrong, you still have to do some work. But the toppings are just as easy or as complicated as you feel up to making! One thing to note – the dough does take some time to rise. I did not plan for this, so I ended up eating a very late breakfast. OK, fine I’ll admit that it was pretty much lunch. However, you can also start this dough a day in advance and store it in the refrigerator. That is, of course, if unlike me, you actually plan your Breakfast Pizza making adventure out ahead of time.

So what kind of pizza did I end up with?? Well, the joy of cooking at home is that you can play around and use whatever you have in your kitchen. We opted for 2 pizza bases:
– Heirloom Tomato from the Garden, Red Onion, Jalapeno, Basil
– Caramelized Sweet Onion, Mushroom, Black Garlic, Arugula

From there, we added some riccota and egg to those that wanted it, but kept a few without for the vegans in the bunch. Honestly, it was all so delicious, you didn’t even need the egg!

Take a stab at this yourself –

BREAKFAST PIZZA RECIPE (Or just plan-old-pizza)

Dough Ingredients:

#1.2 teaspoons active dry yeast or instant yeast
#2.7/8 to 1 1/8 cups lukewarm water*
#3.2 tablespoons olive oil
#4.3 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
#5.1 1/4 teaspoons salt

Topping Ingredients:

This can be whatever you want. I didn’t even use sauce on mine because I didn’t have any. Some suggestions:

1.Ripe tomato
2.Mushroom
3.Caramelized Onion
4.Jalapeno
5.Basil
6.Garlic
7.Arugula
8.Ricotta Cheese
9.Eggs
10.Sauce, if you want it! (We didn’t use any for either of ours)

Procedure:

1) If you’re using active dry yeast, dissolve it, with a pinch of sugar, in 2 tablespoons of the lukewarm water. Let the yeast and water sit at room temperature for 15 minutes, until the mixture has bubbled and expanded. If you’re using instant yeast, you can skip this step. If there are no bubbles, your yeast may be dead, so be sure to start with a fresh package.

2) Combine the dissolved yeast with the remainder of the ingredients. Mix and knead everything together—by hand, mixer or bread machine set on the dough cycle—till you’ve made a soft, smooth dough. If you’re kneading in a stand mixer, it should take 4 to 5 minutes at second speed, and the dough should barely clean the sides of the bowl, perhaps sticking a bit at the bottom. Don’t over-knead the dough; it should hold together, but can still look fairly rough on the surface.

3) To make pizza now: Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover the bowl, and allow it to rise till it’s very puffy. This will take about an hour using instant yeast, or 90 minutes using active dry. If it takes longer, that’s OK; just give it some extra time.

4) To make pizza later: Allow the dough to rise, covered, for 45 minutes at room temperature. Refrigerate the dough for 4 hours (or for up to 24 hours); it will rise slowly as it chills. . About 2 to 3 hours before you want to serve pizza, remove the dough from the refrigerator.

5) Decide what size, shape, and thickness of pizza you want to make. This recipe will make about 2 medium sized pizzas, or 6 to 8 personal sized pizzas. I was sharing with my roommates, so just for fun, we did  a few different sizes.

6) Divide the dough in to half for 2 pizzas, or 6 to 8 small pieces for smaller personal pizzas

7) Use vegetable oil pan spray to lightly grease the pan(s) of your choice. Drizzle olive oil into the bottom of the pan(s). The pan spray keeps the pizza from sticking; the olive oil gives the crust great flavor and crunch.

8) Place the dough in the prepared pan(s). Press it over the bottom of the pan, stretching it towards the edges. Don’t worry about it being perfect. Home made pizza dough should be rustic!

9) Allow the dough to rise, covered, till it’s noticeably puffy, about 90 minutes (if it hasn’t been refrigerated); or 2 to 2 1/2 hours (if it’s been refrigerated). Towards the end of the rising time, preheat the oven to 450°F.

10) Add your toppings of choice. If you are choosing to add an egg, do not at it yet!

13) Bake the pizza on the lower oven rack till it looks and feels set on top, and is just beginning to brown around the edge of the crust, but is still pale on top. This will take about 8 to 15 minutes, depending on how think you made yours, so you just have to take that in to consideration and monitor it.

14) When you’re pizza is just a few minutes from being cooked – add your egg. Just crack the egg in to a small bowl, take the pizza out of the oven and then gently pour on to hot pizza. Return to oven as soon as possible Let cook for approximately 5 more minutes, or until egg white has set.

15) Remove from oven, let cool slightly (no pizza-mouth, ouch) and dig right in! You can choose to cut in to slices with a pizza cutter, or just tear off bites as you go. It’s up to you!

Pro-Tip: This dough is GREAT on the grill. To grill pizza, you just need to have your toppings already cooked. Then you plop it on the grill at medium heat. Wait just a few minutes until it gets slightly brown, then flip it! Now really quick while it is cooking, add your toppings of choice and cover for about 10 more minute until the bottom is nice and crisp and the toppings are warm. Yum!…

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Napoles Ceviche – Summer Mexican Cactus Salad! – Recipe

There are certain foods that you only get certain times of the year. I always try to take advantage of these things, and get creative with what I make to play with the most fun seasonal recipes I can.

WELL! That being said, we all know how crazyyyyyy hot this LA Indian Summer has been. Which means that the produce that survives best in our desert climate is abundant – including Cactus!

Now, I know that most people in the US may not be accustomed to eating cactus, but in some countries – like Mexico – it is a fairly common practice. When I was at the farmer’s market last weekend, the broad green pads of the Napol cactus plant inspired me… to make Napoles (Cactus) Ceviche!

Using the traditional ceviche flavors and all of my awesome farmer’s market finds, I created a vegan cactus based ceviche that was KILLER.

The result was not only bright and delicious, but so colorful and beautiful!!

Check out the simple recipe below to make your own.

NOTE: Don’t like or can’t find cactus? You can leave it out. I swear! Just add in some other of your favorite vegetables that would go well with the ceviche flavors (I’ll list some below)

NAPOLES CEVICHE RECIPE

Ingredients:

3 napol (cactus) leaf pads

Lime juice – a lot! (probably 6 to 10 limes)

Salt! (more salt than you think)

2 Ripe Heirloom Tomato, chopped in to large cubes (vary the colors for a beautiful look)

1 can baby artichoke hearts in brine, chopped if needed

1 Cucumber, peeled and sliced in to rounds

1 bu Cilantro – half minced, half full leaves

3 cloves garlic, minced

3 Green onion, sliced in to thin rings

3-6 chiles, sliced in to thin rings (how spicy? Your choice. I used a variety for both nice chili flavor and a kick!)

 

Serve with:

Guacamole

Corn Tortilla Chips

 

Procedure:

  1. Cut cactus in to small bite-sized pieces and place in a bowl. Add a generous amount of salt (about 1 Tbs) and lime juice to cover. Let sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or up to 3 hours. NOTE: The cactus will naturally forma  slimey/gooey texture while sitting. Don’t let this freak you out! It is totally normal, and will lessen once added in with the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Pick your poison… And by poison I mean heat. I think that using a variety of different chilis really makes this stand out – some mild ones for the nice chili flavor, others for a spicy kick. I used a combination of mild red chilis, medium jalapeno chilis, and hot hot hot Thai chilis for that extra heat that I love. You might want to exclude the Thai chilis, or even the jalapenos, if you do not like spicy foods.
  3. Mix it up! Add all of the vegetable ingredients in to a bowl, reserving the lime and salt for later. I like to do the “meat” of the ceviche first – cactus, tomato, artichoke, cucumber. Then i check it out and see if it needs more or less of any item. Then, throw in the minced cilantro, garlic, onion, and chilis –  taking this one one step at a time – especially if you are using spicy chilis. You want to be careful that non of these items overpower everything else. It should all meld nicely. Add in lime juice until all the vegetables are well covered, but not  soupy. Stir well.
  4. Now – TASTE! Note that you have not yet added salt to the full mixture, but there is already salt in the cactus. So mix it very well, then add additional salt if needed. Because these are all fresh veggies, and the lime juice balances the salt out a lot, you will likely need to add more. So salt to taste.
  5. Final taste test – is it spicy enough? sour enough? salty enough? Does it need more garlic or onion? You are the maestro here, so get nuts.
  6. Let the ceviche sit in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes for all the flavors to meld. Overnight is even better.
  7. Serve with your favorite guacamole and corn tortilla chips and top with the whole fresh cilantro leaves. (YUM!)

This recipe can be eaten alone, used like a “dip” and eaten with tortilla chips, or even added on top of your favorite dish, sort of like a fresh vegetable salsa.

NOTE: No cactus for you? Try these perfect alternative veggies that go great in Veggie Ceviche: heart of palm, mushroom, corn, avocado, or whatever you feel like trying.…

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