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Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Pizza Made at Home


Hey Guys, After a long day at work, it's tempting to stop and pick up dinner from a favorite takeout joint instead of making a meal at home. It's not just a busy schedule that makes this option so enticing; a lot of takeout foods are simply delicious. But eating takeout all the time quickly becomes expensive. Fortunately, many of the best takeout meals can be made quickly and cheaply at home...Like Pizza

For your information...Pizza can be as simple as topping a few bagels or bread with tomato sauce and some shredded cheese, and baking in the oven (or toaster oven) for 7 to 8 minutes. Add fresh veggies sitting in the fridge as toppings. Making homemade pizza dough is similarly easy, although it can add considerable preparation time.

Check it out-

INGREDIENTS:
  • Pizza Dough:
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil, plus more for oiling bowl
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup store-bought or homemade pizza sauce, recipe follows:
  • 12 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced thin
  • 1 cup pepperoni pieces
  • Four Cheese Pizza:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • One 3.5-ounce jar pesto
  • 12 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced thin
  • 4 ounces fontina, grated
  • 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano
  • Tomato Basil Salad:
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 pint red grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1 pint yellow grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 16 fresh basil leaves, chiffonade, plus more if needed
  • Salt and pepper
  • Pizza Sauce:
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • Three 15-ounce cans crushed tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper
  • Pinch sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 8 to 10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
DIRECTIONS:


  • For the pizza dough: Sprinkle the active dry yeast over 1 1/2 cups of warm--not lukewarm--water.
  • In a mixer with a paddle attachment, combine the flour and salt. With the mixer running on low speed, drizzle in the olive oil and mix until combined. Pour in the yeast mixture and mix until combined.
  • Coat a separate mixing bowl with a light drizzle of olive oil and tip the dough in. Form a ball and toss to coat the dough ball in the olive oil. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise for at least 1 hour, or up to 3 or 4 days refrigerated.
  • Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F.
  • To prepare the dough for the pizza assembly: Divide the dough into two equal parts. Roll out one part as thinly as possible and place on a baking sheet. Repeat with the second piece of dough.
  • For the basic pepperoni pizza: Spread the sauce over the pizza base. Top with the sliced mozzarella and pepperoni.
  • For the four cheese pizza: Drizzle on the olive oil and sprinkle on some salt and pepper. Pour the jar of pesto onto the dough and spread evenly. Add the mozzarella, fontina, goat cheese and Pecorino Romano.
  • Bake both pizzas until the crusts are golden and the cheese is bubbly, 12 to 15 minutes.
  • For the tomato basil salad: While the pizzas are baking, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a small skillet. Add the garlic and stir, lightly frying for about a minute and removing it from the heat before the garlic gets too brown (it can be golden). Pour it into a mixing bowl and allow to cool slightly. Add the tomatoes, balsamic, basil and some salt and pepper to the bowl. Toss to combine, and then taste and add more basil if needed, and more salt if needed. Set aside.
  • Top the four cheese pizza with the tomato basil salad. Cut the pizzas into slices and serve.
Pizza Sauce:
  • Add a tablespoon or so of olive oil into a hot pan over medium-high heat. Throw in the garlic and chopped onions and give them a stir. Cook until the onions are soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth, whisking to deglaze the bottom of the pan. Cook until the liquid reduces by half. Add the crushed tomatoes and stir to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste and a pinch of sugar. Add the dried oregano and basil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.

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Food Safety Tips
Protect yourself against food-borne illnesses.


1. Use a "refrigerator thermometer" to keep your food stored at a safe temperature (below 40 degrees fahrenheit).

Cold temperatures slow the growth of bacteria. Ensuring that your refrigerator temperature stays at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or colder is one of the most effective ways to reduce your risk of food-borne illness. You can buy a refrigerator/freezer thermometer at appliance stories, home centers (i.e. Home Depot), and kitchen stores including online ones, such as Cooking.com.

2. Defrost food in the refrigerator, the microwave, or in cold water... never on the counter!

Perishable foods should never be thawed on the counter for longer than two hours because, while the center of the food may remain frozen, the outer surface may enter the Danger Zone, the range of temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly. If you’re short on time, use the microwave or you can thaw meat and poultry in airtight packaging in cold water. Change the water every half-hour so it stays cold and use the thawed food immediately.

3. Always use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/fish and cooked foods/fresh produce.

Bacteria from uncooked meat, poultry, and fish can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. An important way to reduce this risk is to use separate cutting boards for raw meat/poultry/ fish, and cooked foods/fresh produce.

4. Always cook meat to proper temperatures, using a calibrated instant-read thermometer to make sure.

One effective way to prevent illness is to use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of meat, poultry, and egg dishes. The USDA Recommended Safe Minimum Internal Temperatures are as follows:

* Beef, veal, and lamb (steaks and roasts), fish - 145 degrees fahrenheit

* Pork and ground beef - 160 degrees fahrenheit

* Poultry - 165 degrees fahrenheit.

Cook meats like roasts and steaks to lower temperatures, closer to medium-rare, so that they retain their moisture. It is recommended that those who are at high risk for developing food-borne illness (i.e. pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, people with weakened immune systems, or certain chronic illnesses) should follow the USDA guidelines.

5. Avoid unpasteurized/raw milk and cheeses made from unpasteurized milk that are aged less than 60 days.

Raw milk is milk from cows, sheep, or goats that has not been pasteurized (heated to a very high temperature for a specific length of time) to kill harmful bacteria that may be present. These bacteria, which include salmonella, E. coli and listeria, can cause serious illness and sometimes even death. The bacteria in raw milk can be especially dangerous to pregnant women, children, the elderly, and people with weakened immune systems or chronic illnesses. Raw milk cheeses aged 60 days or longer are okay, since the salt and acidity of the cheese-making process make for a hostile environment to pathogens.

6. Never eat "runny" eggs or foods, such as cookie dough, that contain raw eggs.

Even eggs that have clean, intact shells may be contaminated with salmonella, so it’s important to cook eggs thoroughly until both the yolk and the white are firm. Casseroles and other dishes containing eggs should be cooked to 160 degrees fahrenheit and you can use an instant-read food thermometer to check. Eggs should always be cooked fully and those who are at high risk for developing foodborne illness (pregnant women and their unborn babies, newborns, young children, older adults, and people with weakened immune systems or certain chronic illnesses should follow the USDA guidelines. If you can’t resist runny eggs or sampling cookie batter, use pasteurized eggs. They’re found near other eggs in large supermarkets.

7. Always wash your hands in warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds before handling food and after touching raw meat, poultry, or eggs.

You can pick up a lot of bacteria out in the world, so it’s important to always wash your hands before you eat or prepare food. You should also wash your hands after touching any uncooked meat, poultry, fish, or eggs, as the bacteria from these foods can contaminate cooked foods and fresh produce. Use soap and warm water and wash thoroughly for at least 20 seconds.

8. Always heat leftover foods to 165 degrees fahrenheit.

The USDA recommends heating all cooked leftovers to 165 degrees fahrenheit in order to kill all potentially dangerous bacteria.

9. Never eat meat, poultry, eggs, or sliced fresh fruits and vegetables that have been left out for more than two hours or more than one hour in temperatures hotter than 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

If you leave perishable foods out of the refrigerator or freezer for more than two hours they may enter the Danger Zone—the unsafe temperatures between 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit, in which bacteria multiply rapidly.

10. Whenever there’s a food recall, check products stored at home to make sure they are safe.

You should discard any food that’s been recalled because it’s associated with the outbreak of a food-borne illness. But, according to a survey conducted by Rutgers University during the fall of 2008, only about 60% of Americans search their homes for foods that have been recalled because of contamination. For more information on food recalls, visit the website Recalls.gov






Cavier & Vodka
Courtesy of The Lady (Bug) of the Household