Saturday, October 9, 2010

When two favorites unite

It's no secret that I'm a huge fan of pizza.  Huge.  It may not be as known that I also love cuisine from south of the border.  Tacos, enchiladas, nachos... So what could be better than bringing together two of my favorite cuisines?

Ladd and I consider a pizza shell to be nothing more than a blank canvas.  If we're in the mood for a favorite stand-by, it's BBQ chicken pizza; classic comfort always leads to margarita or white pizza (my favorite!); something all wrapped up will take us down the road of stuffed pizza or stromboli.  With pizza, we become culinary artists.

It was about a year or so ago that we were visiting family in the northeast and we happened upon a bit of a dodgy pizza parlor one afternoon.  Truth be told we were feeling a bit "spent" from the night before and just wanted something to-go with enough "umph" to it to make us feel human again.  Ladd ordered a Mexican Pizza and I looked at him like he'd just stepped out of the loony bin.  "You're never going to like that.  It's too... out there for you."  Open mouth, insert foot.  He did like it, and so did I as I pushed aside my mediocre meal and began stealing away at his. 

There was nothing memorable about that pizza joint other than its Mexican pizza. I don't know the name, hardly remember where it was, and certainly have forgotten what I even ordered.  However, Ladd's pizza choice stuck with me, and when I wanted to try a new pizza last week, this is the one I went for.  It's everything you love on a taco without the corn tortilla.  There's the comforts of pizza- fresh dough, gooey-stretchy cheese- with a few non-traditional ingredients and a little spice kicked in.  Swapping in a tomatillo salsa for the traditional red sauce is one of my favorite things about this pizza.  It's the perfect blanket for the pizza dough.  I recommend a fork and knife, bottle of hot sauce and an icy cold Mexican beer in a frosty mug.

Mexican Pizza, Holly-Style

Roll out your pizza dough and top with about 3/4 of a jar of tomatillo salsa.

Quick tip on dough: you should let your dough sit out in an oiled bowl for at least an hour to make it easier to work with. 

Top with cooked taco meat (we use ground turkey and about 1/2 packet of taco seasoning, a little extra cumin and a dash of essence)
Add vegetables: sliced tomato, thinly sliced onion, and bell pepper

Top with cheese: a combination of Mexican blend and mozzarella, totalling about 2 cups. 

Add some sliced jalapeno peppers. Want it extra hot?  Leave the seeds.  Less daring? Seed the peppers before slicing.

Pop it in a 425 degree oven for about 10-12 minutes.  Your dough should have some baking instructions for you. 

To finish: top with shredded ice burg lettuce and a dollop of cool sour cream.  We put out the hot sauce as well!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Guest Post: Sister's Cooking!

Lucky me!  I've roped my little sister into guest posting on My Life Through Food.  She's part hair stylist, part photographer, part artist and 100% mom.  Now she can claim to be part blogger.  My next mission will be to get her to contribute one of her fabulous cheesecakes- they'll rock your world. 

Without rattling on too much... here's Lizzy!

Having a baby changes a lot of things.  One of those happens to be the way you plan and organize your day. Running out to the grocery store every day after I've decided what to make, isn't nearly as easy when toting around a 4 month old. As a result, I came to the conclusion that it was high time to start being an organized dinner maker.  I read blogs, scoured magazines, came up with a few concoctions of my own and lo and behold- our menu for the week came together.  It wasn't as labor intensive as it sounds and I even enjoyed myself a little. Amidst the weeks worth of entrees, the little gem I created for last nights dinner is worth sharing. It uses some grocery store conveniences such as rotisserie chicken and herbed cous-cous, but they get spiced up with a couple not so ordinary ingredients.  Any busy mom can put this together and the whole family will enjoy it! Super delicious and not too bad for the waistline, it definitely gets earmarked for another appearance.  
Lemon Chicken Salad
 *Whisk together*
1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil
A few chopped garlic cloves
juice of one large lemon
splash of apple cider vinegar
3/4 plain Greek yogurt
a small handful of fresh dill/chives
dash of hot sauce (I used Sriracha)

  *Toss into dressing*
1 rotisserie chicken (skin and bones discarded- meat shredded)
1 small red bell pepper chopped
little bit of chopped red onion
1/3 seedless/skinless cucumber chopped
2 ribs of celery from the heart (cut on the bias)
2 plum tomatoes chopped
 *Serve with*
4 warmed pita/flat bread
Sweet and Salty Couscous
1 box herb & garlic couscous
handful of craisin/raisin mix
helping of feta cheese crumbles (I use the Mediterranean blend)
handful of chopped scallions

*Prepare as box directs... then stir in above delights*
Simple Spinach
In a saute pan heat a dash of olive oil, toss in some fresh garlic.  Once heated, throw two big handfuls of spinach leaves-- season with salt and pepper.  Toss until wilted.  Serve with diced tomatoes.