Goat Cheese and Arugula Pizza with Spicy Honey

This recipe is what everyone needs during this self isolation era. I can promise you that however you are getting your groceries, the goat cheese and arugula are not what’s flying off of the shelves. However, the flour and yeast is so hopefully you already have that stocked in your pantry or you can find pre-made pizza dough; luckily I did.

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Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup marinara sauce

4 ounces goat cheese

1 1/2 cups freshly grated cheese (mozzarella or a blend)

4 cups baby arugula greens

 

Spicy Honey

 

1/2 cup honey

1 jalapeño pepper thinly sliced 

 

Directions

Prep the dough and let it rise.
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Drizzle a couple of tablespoons olive oil into a 9×13 cake pan or dish.
Remove the dough from the bowl and knead it a few times until silky, using a sprinkle of extra flour if needed. Place the dough in the pan and press it out towards the edges. Once it’s in the pan and as close to the edges as it will get, cover it and let it rise again for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 550 degrees F.
To assemble the pizza, press the dough down in the pan with your fingertips and remove any large air bubbles. Spread the sauce on the dough, leaving a small border around the edges. Add on about 1/2 of the goat cheese and top with the grated cheeses.
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Bake the pizza for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the cheese is golden and bubbly and the crust around the edges is golden. Toss the arugula with the tablespoon of olive oil. Remove the pizza and drizzle it with a few tablespoons of the spicy honey.
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Top it with the arugula. Add the remaining crumbled goat cheese, don’t forget the jalapeno slices!
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Sit back and enjoy!

Tomato Galette with Honey, Goat Cheese and Caramelized Shallots

I have made a few versions of a tomato tart but I have to say that as much as I love puff pastry, it’s hard to beat a good pastry crust. Now….don’t freak out and go buy a refrigerated pie dough. It takes less than 10 minutes and you have everything you need in your kitchen. If you don’t have flour, butter and salt on hand, then maybe you shouldn’t be making a recipe with the word “galette” in it, you catch my drift?

Galette is a French word describing a free form pie or pastry, basically saving you time and effort of fitting the dough perfectly into a pie tin. Also allowing you to pull off a fancy yet rustic and mouthwatering dish without much effort.

These ingredients all together make the perfect meal to kick off summer. Don’t forget your glass of wine.

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Ingredients

PASTRY DOUGH

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 to 5 tablespoons ice water

FILLING

4 Shallots, diced (about 1 cup)

2 tsps Extra Virgin Olive Oil + more for drizzling

8 oz Goat Cheese

2 – 3 Tbs Honey

3 – 4 Heirloom Tomatoes, sliced

1/2 tsp Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper

2 Tbs Fresh Thyme

1 Large Egg, beaten

Directions

Blend together flour, butter, and salt in a bowl with your fingertips or a pastry blender  just until mixture resembles coarse meal with some roughly pea-size butter lumps.

Drizzle 3 tablespoons ice water evenly over mixture and gently stir with a fork until incorporated.

When the dough begins to hold together (If it doesn’t hold together, add more ice water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, stirring  until incorporated, then check again)  turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface.

Gather the dough and gather into a ball and then shape into a flattened disc. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for at least one hour.

While the dough chills, in a skillet combine shallots and 2 tsp of olive oil. Saute over medium-high heat until shallots are lightly caramelized (about 10 minutes), then remove from heat to cool.

Preheat oven to 375F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper, sprinkling the top with a touch of flour.

Using  a floured rolling-pin, roll out the chilled dough into a 1/8″ thick sheet, then transfer to parchment-lined baking sheet. Crumble goat cheese in all over the rolled-out dough but leaving a rough 2 inch border along the edges. Drizzle a good serving of honey over goat cheese, then evenly top with caramelized shallots. Layer the sliced tomatoes over the goat cheese and honey and then liberally season them with salt and pepper. Give a good drizzle of additional olive oil over the tomatoes, and then sprinkle with the thyme.

Fold up the edges of the pastry dough around the tomatoes, then brush the crust with the beaten egg. Bake galette for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the crust is golden and the tomatoes have begun to char, then cool for 10 minutes before serving.

 

 

 

 

Tommy Tart Remake

A few months ago I made this Tommy Tart and although it was good, it needed something more. I decided to remake it adding more flavor.  Instead of Boursin cheese I used an herb goat cheese and parmesan. I also added sautéed onions…because why not? The best part is I used a tad of wine to cook the onions in. It basically forces you to have wine with your tart because now you have an open bottle. You’re welcome.

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Ingredients

1 sheet puff pastry- defrosted

good olive oil

1 sweet onion, sliced

1 garlic clove sliced

1 tsp. fresh thyme

2 tbs white wine

1/4 cup parmesan cheese

4 oz garlic herb goat cheese

2 tomatoes, sliced

fresh basil

salt and pepper

 

Pre-heat oven to 425.

Place pastry sheet on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Saute onion and garlic in a tablespoon of olive oil. Saute for 15-20 minutes until onions are limp. Stir in wine, thyme and salt and continue to cook another 10 minutes until onion start to turn brown and liquid evaporates, remove from heat and set aside.

Sprinkle parmesan on puff pastry. Then top with onions and crumbled goat cheese. Layer tomatoes  on top of cheese then drizzle with some olive oil, sprinkle with salt and basil.

Pop into the oven for 20-25 minutes. Serve warm and with the extra wine you now have.

 

 

Paleo Pizza #2

This pizza has an eggplant base crust. I will be honest when I first saw the recipe I hemmed and hawed and tried really hard to keep the negative thoughts to myself. I reminded myself It was Father’s day and this is what he wanted, so don’t be a bitch.

This crust was pretty easy to make, peel an eggplant, grate it, squeeze out the liquid and mix in a few more ingredients…done.  I followed this recipe for the measurements and ingredients  but when it came to cooking it I more or less followed the cauliflower crust recipe. The two crust recipes were so different in cooking temperature and time but I was pretty sure they didn’t need to be and I was right. I cooked the eggplant crust on a slightly higher heat for a shorter amount of time and it was fine. I did however flip the crust over in the middle of cooking like the original recipe suggested, didn’t want to get too crazy.

I was highly surprised by how good this was as a crust. As Shane said, “you wouldn’t want to make bread sticks out of this”. Alone is has a slightly bitter flavor so use this for a pizza with strong flavors. I put caramelized onions, goat cheese, arugula, prosciutto, tomatoes and basil and it was delish. The sweetness of the onions is amazing with goat cheese…just saying.

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Eggplant Crust

1 eggplant, peeled and grated

1/4 cup Almond meal

1/4 cup Flax seed meal

1 egg, beaten

salt and pepper, to taste

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Grate eggplant with a cheese grater, discarding the skin.

Place grated eggplant in a clean dish towel, and squeeze over a sink to remove excess liquid.

Pour grated eggplant into a large mixing bowl.

Add in the flax meal and almond meal.

Whisk egg in a smaller bowl and add to batter.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

Mix until ingredients are evenly combined.

Pour out batter onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.

Smooth batter out with hands into a thin layer about 1/8 inch thick.

Bake for 10-13 minutes or until golden brown, then remove the crust from oven.

Lightly grease another piece of parchment paper with olive oil, and place on top of crust. Carefully flip the crust and then slowly peel off the parchment paper from the bottom side.

Brush the flipped side lightly with olive oil. { I used garlic infused olive oil }

Return to oven and cook 8-10 minutes until golden brown and edges are crisp.

Now you can add your topping and pop back into the oven until cheese in melted 7-10 minutes.

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Paleo Pizzas {Pizza #1}

What do you get a man that doesn’t need anything? That is what I always struggle with when it comes to buying Shane {or my dad for that matter } a gift. So for Father’s day I told Shane I would make him anything he wanted for dinner, he decided on Paleo pizza. I made two, one with a cauliflower crust and one with an eggplant crust, both with the same toppings. I thought it would be easier to decide which crust was better if the toppings were the same.

So, were they good? Yes, the cauliflower crust has a really good flavor but it is delicate and can’t hold a lot of toppings. You have to make sure you squeeze all of the water out of the cauliflower or it will take forever to cook. The edges get crispy and you can taste the cheese, yum. We didn’t have any leftovers but I don’t think this crust will hold up well over time.

The eggplant crust is easier to make and like the cauliflower you need to make sure to squeeze all of the water out, I had Shane help, man hands are better at this. This crust is sturdier and crispier than the other and overall resembled more of a “real” pizza crust. The eggplant crust is  the better of the two with toppings but alone it had a slightly bitter taste.

So if I had to choose, I would use the eggplant crust with a pizza that has a lot of strong tasting toppings and the cauliflower crust for a more mellow pizza like the Margherita or plain cheese.

These are the toppings I used.

No sauce just some garlic and olive oil.

Mozzarella + Parmesan + Goat cheese

Prosciutto, caramelized onions, fresh arugula and fresh basil { I added some chopped tomatoes on pizza #2 }

Cauliflower Crust  I used this recipe and it was spot on.

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1 small to medium sized head of cauliflower – should yield 2 to 3 cups once processed
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil (crush it even more between your fingers)
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (crust it even more between you fingers)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
optional a few shakes of crushed red pepper
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
1 egg
optional 1 tablespoon almond meal

Place a pizza stone in the oven, or baking sheet if you don’t have a pizza stone. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. On a cutting board, place a large piece of parchment paper and spray it with nonstick cooking oil.

Wash and throughly dry a small head of cauliflower. Don’t get one the size of your head unless you are planning on making 2 pizzas. Cut off the florets, you don’t need much stem. Just stick with the florets. Pulse in your food processor for about 30 seconds, until you get powdery snow like cauliflower. See above photo. You should end up with 2 to 3 cups cauliflower “snow”. Place the cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and cover. Microwave for 4 minutes. Dump cooked cauliflower onto a clean tea towel and allow to cool for a bit before attempting the next step.

Once cauliflower is cool enough to handle, wrap it up in the dish towel and ring the heck out of it. You want to squeeze out as much water as possible. This will ensure you get a chewy pizza like crust instead of a crumbly mess.

Dumped ringed out cauliflower into a bowl. Now add 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/2 teaspoon dried basil (crush up the leaves even more between your fingers before adding), 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano (crush up the leaves even more between your fingers before adding), 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (not garlic salt), and a dash of red pepper if you want. I also added 1 tablespoon almond meal because my cauliflower yielded closer to 2 cups of cauli snow, this is optional and I would not add the almond meal if you have closer to 3 cups of cauli snow. Now add your egg and mix away. Hands tend to work best.

Once mixed together, use your hands to form the dough into a crust on your oiled parchment paper. Pat it down thoroughly, you want it nice and tightly formed together. Don’t make it too thick or thin either.
Using a cutting board slide the parchment paper onto your hot pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 8 – 11 minutes, until it starts to turn golden brown. Remove from oven.
Add your toppings and then slide parchment with topped pizza back in the hot oven and cook for another 5 to 7 minutes until the cheese is melted, bubbly, and slightly golden.
Allow to cool for a few minutes then cut and serve.
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date, corn and goat cheese salad

I finally did it. I’ve been dreaming about it, waiting for the right time and I finally did it. It was awesome!

I made this salad.  I found the recipe on one of the blogs I follow and I have been thinking about it ever since. The flavors are so perfect together, a little of everything, sweet, crunchy, bitter and just plain delicious.

I am going to have it again for dinner and maybe again for lunch tomorrow.

Ingredients 

*serves 2

1 tsp oil (like grapeseed or olive)

1 cup frozen corn

8 cups greens of choice

1Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

salt & pepper

4 dates, sliced thinly

2 oz goat cheese

2 Tbsp toasted walnuts

Heat oil in small pan.

Add corn and saute for about 3-5 minutes, until golden brown.

Set aside.

Toss lettuce with olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.

Divide onto two plates.

Top greens with dates, goat cheese, walnuts, corn and turkey or chicken if desired.