Butternut Squash Pizza

Pizza is a popular dish around this house. It’s easy, fun, feeds a lot of people and is infinitely customizable.

This weekend I whipped up a butternut squash and onion pizza to take with us on a picnic. That’s right, a picnic. If you like cold pizza, it’s a really good option! Just slice it up, lay it flat in a big ziploc and plop it in the cooler. Or the wicker picnic basket, if that’s how you do things.

This was kind of a “leftover” pizza – I’d  made pizza for a dinner party earlier in the week (pizza is very versatile!) and saved a bit of dough in the fridge. You can see the recipe for the dough in an earlier post. The squash was leftover too – I had roasted it a few days before for enchilada making!

So I just stretched out the dough, and as you can see I did not achieve a perfect circle! Then I spooned a little Newman’s Own pasta sauce on top, added some chunks of mozzarella, and then layered on my roasted butternut squash and some raw red onions and just a few yellow pepper pieces. Into the oven, set to 450, for about 10 minutes.

A very quick way to feed 4 people while getting rid of leftovers. I LOVE using leftovers in new ways, but it’s definitely something I struggle with – lots of repeat meals!

Crispy crunchy crust, slightly sweet squash. Delicious onions. Sorry, I could think of any alliterative adjectives for the onions.

Make some dough!


Family Pizza Night

Yesterday was the last day at my parents’ house! It was really fun to visit them for such a nice long time and I was sad to leave this morning. We’re staying with G’s family for a few days now before spending New Years in Ann Arbor and then going back to Seattle.

For our last dinner at my parents’ house, we made pizza!

Making pizza with family and friends is one of my favorite things to do. And, my Dad worked at a pizza place a million years ago (when he was in college) so he can throw the dough and spin it just right. I made the dough, using this recipe, doubled, and we chopped up peppers, onions, tomatoes, and spinach for toppings.

We had some dough tossing tutorials.

G got the hang of it in no time. Total pizza pro.

Pretty excited about his new skill.

I was not as adept at dough handling. I put some holes in the crust. Fortunately my more professional pizza making family helped fix my problems.

Our first pizza had a thin crust and was delicious.

Our second pizza was thicker and cheesier. And also delicious.

The third pizza had pepperoni on it and was the exclusive property of my sister and her friends.

Delicious and fun family time.

After dinner I won Trivial Pursuit. Yes!

Potato Pizza

I made pizza dough for the first time yesterday.

I was nervous. But I needn’t have been. It wasn’t too hard. I used recipes from Joy the Baker and Smitten Kitchen.

Here’s what you do:

Get a bowl

Mix 3 cups of flour with 2 teaspoons salt

Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of yeast

Then 1 cup of warm water

And stir in 2 tablespoons of olive oil

Stir that all together. It’s gloppy.

Plop the glop on a floured board. This is the fun part. Mush it around until it becomes a ball. Knead it a little more, just because it’s satisfying.

Ok, stop!

Oil a bowl, with Pam or olive oil or whatever. Drop your ball of dough inside.

Cover with plastic wrap.

Leave alone.

I let mine rise for about 3 hours because that’s what worked for my timing and my life. The recipes say 1 to 2 hours is enough.

I love rising dough, don’t you? It’s so science project.

When the dough has risen, squish it. Take it out of its bowl, and press out the air bubbles. Then put it back in its bowl, cover it back up, and let it rise for a 2nd time, for about 20 minutes.

While the dough is rising, prepare your toppings!

You can put just about anything on a pizza.

I put potatoes on this pizza. Of course.

Potatoes, and spreadable truffle flavored cheese.

And onions.

I sliced my taters super thin, per Smitten Kitchen recipe. I don’t have a mandolin, and I only had fingerling potatoes, but I just sliced carefully with my big knife and all seemed to work out fine.

Then I soaked the potatoes in cold water to get some of the starch off.

G chopped the onions.

Choppity chop. Action shot.

Once everything was sliced and chopped, I tossed the onions and potatoes in 1 tablespoon of olive oil and added some salt and pepper.

I preheated the oven to 450 degrees, and spread my dough out on a baking sheet. It was a little tricky to get it as thin as I wanted, but we managed to shape it into a rough rectangle using our hands and a pint glass as a rolling pin.

Then I spread the truffle flavored fromage blanc from Mt. Townsend Creamery onto the dough, and laid our thinly sliced potatoes atop that.

Into the oven for 23 minutes!

Looks good! Well, it looks kind of yellow, but that’s because I took this photo at night and the flash ruins everything.

Tastes good.

The dough was great, a little thicker than I’ll try for next time, but was fairly crunchy and tasted great. The cheese is of course delicious, and the potatoes crisp up around the edges in a fabulous way.

And now that I know how to make pizza dough, you can bet we’ll be trying out tons of topping combinations in the near future.

That’s an exciting thought!


Here’s some food I’ve made lately. HEALTHY! And  good.

Have I told you how important quinoa is around this house? We ate a 4 lb bag of it in 2 months. Yikes. It’s good stuff, filled with protein.

I made this quinoa, black bean and corn dish several times over the past few weeks. It’s good warm or cold.

The recipe calls for cooking the quinoa in black bean soup, then mixing in salsa, canned beans and corn, and jalapenos. Be careful with the jalapenos. Don’t touch your face as you chop them. I speak from experience. Ouch.

I also made pizza! And salad.

Pizza looks a bit scary right? But it’s just kale. Kale is all over the farmers markets right now. Also, chanterelle mushrooms foraged from the surrounding area. I didn’t do the foraging. But I’m glad somebody did. First time I’ve had chanterelles. Pretty orange things. The cheese on the pizza, a bit like a mozzarella, locally made, is called New Moon cheese. How Twilight-y!

The salad is spinach, radish, tomato, and lemon cucumbers. Lemon cucumbers look like lemons. They don’t taste like lemons. All tossed in a tasty citrus vinaigrette. All from the farmers market of course, except the citrus for the dressing.

Radishes are pretty:

See those cute little lemon cucumbers hiding in the corner?

That’s what’s cooking in this house!