Oh Vancouver and your fickle weather. Our summer seemed over a couple weeks ago as it started to cool off and the days became, almost suddenly, shorter. The fall feeling of sloth and the need to hunker down all cozy-like washed over me and while I was sad that we were losing our sunny mornings, I was happy for the coolness. THEN, well, then last week was a glorious burst of heat and sunshine again. I was caught unprepared because the mornings still felt like fall and I’d throw a sweater on to go to work, our office is cool, and then I’d leave the office in the evening and step out into a hot summer day.
But now we are back to fall. We are into day two of thick fog, though it only started in the afternoon yesterday. I like it, it is like a blanket over the city, tucking us in for a little nap. I mean, I am not going to like it come Monday when the fog-muted sun fails to wake me, but right now, on this quiet Sunday morning, I am digging it.
Looking back on summer, I am excited to share a childhood favourite of mine, that also happens to be an adult favourite too. The recipe was given to my mom by my wonderful Auntie Janice. She’s shared a few recipes with us that I will be using on here eventually, because they are all incredibly tasty (including a Grape Salad and a cheese ball that I distinctly remember being awesome). Quick segue, my Aunt Janice and my mom are in Florence right now! Which is unthinkably exciting. They are having a lovely time, I got to speak with my mom yesterday. They are great friends and I am so happy that they are on this adventure together.
Gloomy weekend! It has been quite chilly and rainy out, which has left me feeling snoozy and glum. Gen and I did some stuff around the house, I reattached the closet door that he had hulked off its hinges on his way to work the other day. I feel like we got some other stuff accomplished but it just went by so quickly that it is truly hard to say. In any case, it was a good enough weekend around the house, over too soon.
Alternative pizza crust time! Now, don’t get me wrong, I love a yeasted dough, probably more than most things in life. But trying new things isn’t a bad thing and this was certainly worth the adventure! I was looking into alternative crusts and came across the “meatza” which is a ground beef crust… delicious, I’m sure, but also terrifying. Gen suggested a cauliflower crust and after some searching around online I read enough to decide that this was worth doing. The crust honestly doesn’t taste like cauliflower. It tastes almost like a fluffy, soft biscuit. The way I went about making this created a fairly stable crust (though we did have to eat it with a fork), and it crisped up nicely on the edges. It certainly wont replace a yeasted crust in my heart, but it was a good experiment that Gen LOVED, so we will certainly be eating it again.
Gen’s birthday was on Saturday and he asked for pizza, yum. I whipped up an easy and delicious pizza dough and topped it with simple ingredients. It was an great way to spend a Saturday night.
- 4.5 tsp active dry yeast
- 2 cups warm water (not hot, don’t kill the yeast)
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 tbsp white sugar
- In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, olive oil, salt, sugar and the yeast mixture; stir well to combine.
- Using a strong wooden spoon (I stress this because I broke my Kel’s favourite) or your dough hook (if you have a mixer), mix until a dough that pulls away from the bowl has formed. Place in an oiled bowl, cover, and let rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350°F.
- Turn dough out onto a well floured surface. Roll into desired shape (I had no pizza pans so I used my cookie sheet covered with parchment paper). Cover with your favourite toppings and bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 20 minutes. This recipe makes two pretty huge cookie sheet pizzas, so we froze one of the balls of dough for later.
Soft pillows of dough.
My favourite toppings?
» Good tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, fresh basil, olive oil.
» Kalamata olives, marinated artichokes, feta, (roasted red peppers are great here too).
Brush your prepared dough with some olive oil, use the artichoke liquid if you are feeling feisty. This actually helps to prevent the crust from getting soggy. This also makes the pizza leftovers (if there are any) freeze well.
Oh yes, and one of the best parts of getting packages from my parents is the fantastic drawings my dad does on the outside.