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This easy to assemble Pizza Bread is fast and customizable.

This month’s recipe quest has me thinking about back to school.

The summer feels like it started three days ago and already my kids are looking at just over a week before they’re back in class. They’re 11 and 14, so I have one who’s been sorting and organizing her school supplies for weeks and one whose basic attitude about back to school, and pretty much everything else, is ‘meh’. 

Kim Shute

Kim Shute

Still, I thought I’d pull a recipe out of my Pinterest archives that is versatile enough for an afternoon snack or a light dinner; pizza bread. 

This easy to assemble bread fits all my favorite recipe criteria: fast, unfussy, customizable and uses ingredients that you should have on hand.

For those of you who aren’t bakers or think homemade bread is beyond your pay grade, this is an easy introduction. It doesn’t require kneading and the dough raises on the counter and the refrigerator so you don’t have to worry about precise temps. It’s also easy enough to let the kiddos help without making you lose your sanity.

For you more seasoned cooks, this is the perfect opportunity to experiment with different toppings and herb combinations .

Because it was my first time trying this I used ingredients similar to what was listed by the recipe for the toppings — mini pepperoni, Italian sausage, onions, peppers and garlic. I was lazy in measuring and I seemed to hit a little short of the 2.5 cups so I threw in a seeded and chopped fresh tomato as well. I happened to have those ingredients already on hand, but you can substitute whatever add-ons you like. I can easily see this working for more sophisticated palates using spinach, artichokes mushrooms etc.

To assemble, you just sprinkle yeast over warm water, let it activate then mix in sugar, salt and flour until combined. Add grated parmesan and your toppings then let it raise for an hour at room temp then another hour in the refrigerator. Roll or pat it out into a rectangle, sprinkle with mozzarella, fold to seal and bake. 

Both my kids liked this a lot. I baked it early in the day so before serving I sliced it and popped it back into a 350 degree oven to warm/toast. We had it with homemade pizza sauce, but my younger daughter said she preferred it plain. Hubby said he thought it would make a good accompaniment to tomato soup.

I like that it’s something the kids can snack on that isn’t processed junk (especially if you load it up with veggies).

Got a good idea for a variation on the toppings? Drop me a line and let me know what you come up with.

Kim Shute can be reached at (815) 879-5200 or ntprinceton@newstrib.com Follow her on Twitter: @NT_Princeton2

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Bureau-Putnam Bureau Chief Contact: (815) 879-5200 ntprinceton@newstrib.com Covering Bureau and Putnam Counties.

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