Posts Tagged ‘olive oil’

It’s Friday. Time to eat some pizza slices.I love making and eating homemade pizza, it is always the best. But then, I didn’t wanted the same old round pizza, so decided to do some experiment and ended up with this rectangular pizza.I like trying out different crust recipes, different toppings and different shapes of pizza.

This pizza is so good.  It’s flavorful, colorful, and delicious to the core.What I like the most is the thin, light and crunchy crust which is so incredibly good.

For the dough:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup warm water plus 1 tbsp
  • 2  1/4 tsp instant or rapid rise yeast
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 3 tbsp extra light olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp oregano

For the topping:

  • 1  (12 ounce ) can chopped tomatoes, drained and washed
  • 1 jalapeno, deveined and thinly chopped
  • 1 tbsp extra light olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

Method:

  • In a small bowl, combine the yeast, sugar and water and stir gently to dissolve. Let the mixture stand until the yeast comes alive and starts to foam, 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Add the 2 tablespoon of olive oil, dried oregano, garlic powder and salt to the yeast-sugar-water mixture.
  • Dump the flour in a large mixing bowl, slowly adding the yeast mixture , knead the dough until smooth and no longer sticky.
  • Shape the dough into a large ball and coat lightly with extra virgin olive oil. Place in a bowl and cover with a damp towel. Set in a warm place to rise until doubled in size about 1 hour.
  • Brush a rimmed baking sheet with olive oil and set aside.
  • Punch down the dough and roll in rectangular shape such that it can fit in the sheet pan. Brush the top with olive oil.
  • Cover and let it rise again until slightly puffed about 1 hour or so.
  • Pre heat oven to 500 degree F.
  • Meanwhile, in a medium bowl combine all the ingredients under topping  except mozzarella cheese and keep aside.
  • Sprinkle the pizzas evenly with grated mozzarella cheese leaving 1/2-inch border on all the sides. Layer tomatoes and jalapeno evenly on the pizza and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkle little salt, freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder, dried oregano and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, until the crust is crisp and the cheeses begin to brown.
  • Let stand 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
Tomato-Jalapeño Thin Crust Pizza

Pesto

Posted: May 25, 2011 by incidentalcooksuman in Italian, Pasta
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Recently, we have been to farmers market and there I saw some fresh and beautiful basil leaves which was very difficult to pass by. Hence even without thinking of any recipe I have decided to buy two bunches of those fresh herbs. It was so fresh that I was in love with the sweet and pungent smell of the leaves. Immediately after coming home,I started looking for some recipes with it. Then thought the best way to use both the bunches would be making some pesto.

The word pesto derives from the Italian for pestle, pestello. Pesto is a versatile sauce, can be made in different ways using different ingredients. Traditionally it is made with basil leaves and olive oil using a mortar and pestle. I have had a pesto pasta long time ago in one of Italian restaurant. Ever since then, I wanted to make some  at home. To my surprise, this is the easiest and versatile sauce to make. You can pair this with any kind of pasta and make a light and fresh meal anytime. Also, pesto can be used in marination for veggies, fish and chicken dishes.

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves
  •  1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  •  2 tablespoon toasted pine nuts
  •  2 tablespoon toasted walnuts
  •  3 cloves garlic
  •  1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
  •  1 teaspoon salt
  •  freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method:

  • In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, add the pine nuts, walnuts, garlic and process for 1 minute or so.
  •  Add the fresh herbs, parmesan cheese and run until it’s a thick paste.
  •  Slowly drizzle in the olive oil until the paste leaves the sides of the bowl and looks like a thick sauce.
  •  Serve, or store the pesto in the refrigerator or freezer with a thin-film of olive oil on top.

Roasted Broccoli

Posted: March 21, 2011 by incidentalcooksuman in Roasted Veggie
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I started eating broccoli after coming to US. Broccoli is a good source of protein, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, vitamin K, folic acid and fiber. Because of its nutritional value broccoli is considered to be super veggie. It’s really hard not to like this veggie if you cook properly,overcooking them really spoils the taste.

I often make this by just blanching the veggie for couple of minutes and toss it with some noodles, pasta and serve. But this time I thought of roasting this veggie and toss it with sesame oil, soy sauce , and sesame seeds which i have adapted from here . A bowl of this healthy delicious veggie is a complete meal in itself.

Roasted Broccoli

Roasted Broccoli

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound broccoli, stem removed and crowns cut into same size florets.
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds, toasted

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  • Place broccoli in a large mixing bowl and toss it with soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil and olive oil.
  • Now layer the broccoli on a large sheet pan and roast 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, stir and continue roasting for another 5 minutes, or until broccoli is crisp-tender and tips of broccoli is slightly browned.
  • Once done, toss it with toasted sesame seeds and Serve hot.
Roasted Broccoli

Roasted Broccoli

 Arugula Salad   

Before making anything with this beautiful looking greens I have decided to taste and must say Arugula tastes peppery and has a strong flavour for a leafy green. This salad I have adapted from Barefoot Contessa – Back to Basics by Ina Garten which I got on my birthday as a present. As I am showing lots of interest in cooking these days, so my dear hubby gifted me these two cooking books, the other one is Giada’s Family Dinners. After getting this and browsing through the recipes I cannot decide what to make as everything looks delicious to me.  

So, I gave this choice to my hubby to decide what he wants from the book and he said this colorful salad which is so refreshing for this season.   

Arugula Salad

Arugula Salad

 Ingredients:   

  • 5 ounce baby Arugula leaves
  • 2 chicken leg pieces
  • 1 large granny smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 dried cranberries

For the dressing:   

  • 1 tablespoon apple sider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

 Preparation:  

  • Preheat oven to 400 deg fahrenheit.
  • Coat chicken leg pieces with generous amount of salt, pepper and olive oil and roast in for 40-45 minutes. Cool of completely and take the bones out and cut into small bite sized chunks.
  • In a large mixing bowl, toss together the arugula leaves, chicken pieces,  apple, walnuts and cranberries and keep it aside.
  • Combine everything under dressing except salt and slowly whisk to incorporate well.
  • Toss the salad with just enough dressing to moisten. Sprinkle with pinch of salt and toss well. Serve immediately.