Clinging to hope in the seasons of suffering and watching God use ALL of it for good.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Leftover Leverage

As you know I have been experiementing with homemade pizzas over the last few months.  I have finally found a dough recipe that we love and I'm really enjoying the perks of making my own pies.  It's a quick and easy dinner idea plus I'm saving a ton of money.  We aren't ordering pizza at all and I have found a great use for leftovers.




Leftovers?

You bet!  These days anything and everything can grace the top of your pizzas and I LOVE that I can give leftovers a second life.  You just have to be discerning about the flavor combinations.  

I really wanted to clean out the fridge.  I had the ingredients to make pizza dough and I imposed a rule that I had to use what was in our house and could not run to the store.  (I laugh because after this experiment I stumbled across an article on MSN.com which tackled this very topic... Easy Meals Using Random Food Already in Your Kitchen.)  Here is a list of some of the ingredient contenders to give you an idea of what I had to work with.

NO TOMATO SAUCE!!  That's right... no crushed tomatoes or real tomatoes to make my sauce.

From the garden:
basil (tons of it from the backyard!)
thyme
oregano
rosemary
mint
cilantro

From the fridge/pantry:
1/2 cup pineapple chunks (leftover from a fruit salad)
1/2 red onion
1/2 bulb garlic
1/2 container of pico de gallo
salad dressings:  honey mustard, zesty italian, peppercorn ranch, balsamic, caesar
Condiments: mustards, mayo, hot sauce, BBQ sauce, pepper jam, fruit jams/etc.
1/2 package sun dried tomatoes
vanilla yogurt
baby romaine
a few slices of bacon
cheeses: limited amounts of mozzarella, cheddar, parmesan and cream cheese
croutons
1/2 jar peanut butter
1/2 jar almond butter

You might think this was a lost cause.  There was a point when I didn't think there was ANYTHING I could make with this list, especially considering my husband's more selective tastes.  Well, I did make two types of pizzas with the ingredients above.  I started by making simple pestos and the inspiration came from there.



Homemade Sundried Tomato Pesto- www.thecreativeconfectionista.com
Homemade Sun Dried Tomato Pesto

Sun Dried Tomato Pesto
1 cup sun dried tomatoes, rehydrated
1 small clove garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
1 T. fresh Thyme
1 T. fresh basil

Blend in a food processor until ingredients are a smooth paste.  Use immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to one week.

While I was at it, I made basil pesto too. 


Homemade Basil Pesto- www.thecreativeconfectionista.com
Homemade Basil Pesto

Basil Pesto
3 cups basil
5 garlic cloves
1/4 cup olive oil
1T almond butter
1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Blend in a food processor until ingredients are a smooth paste.  Use immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to one week.

Both pestos were delicious!  They may not be the purist's recipe, but I used what I had and it served my purposes just fine.  I would make both again.

Once my dough was ready, I set out to make two pies.

Pie #1
BBQ sauce, spread thinly over the dough
red onion, thinly sliced
pineapple, thinly sliced
bacon, cooked and torn into bite sided pieces
mozzarella
cilantro (add after pie is cooked)


Homemade BBQ-Pineapple-Bacon-Onion Pizza- www.thecreativeconfectionista.com
Homemade BBQ-Pineapple-Bacon-Onion Pizza


Pie #2
2 T Zesty Italian dressing, brushed over crust
Sun Dried Tomato pesto, spread thinly over dough
mozzarella


Homemade Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pizza- www.thecreativeconfectionista.com
Homemade Sun Dried Tomato Pesto Pizza

Bake pies for 8-10 minutes each on a pizza stone in a 500 degree oven.

All I can say is WOW!  Why haven't I been making my own pies for the last 12 years?  I seriously can't wait until the next leftover pizza night!!




photo credits: http://www.myrecipes.com, http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com, http://ciolofoods.com

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