Friday, August 31, 2012

Quick Healthy Wholewheat Baby Pizza aka Pizza for Baby

Organic Wholewheat Baby Marguerita Pizza - slightly over browned :)
I said I would never do it.  I swore up and down.  It was one of the handful of rules that my old room mate told me to install as a parent.  Don't have a lot of rules but have a few that you stick to. Rule #1 for her is you eat at the table and you eat what is being served.  Well, lil T was having some teething pains Friday and Saturday so he's been jettisoning anything that is hard on his gums.  He wouldn't even eat the things he normally loves like Pasta.  Of course, oddly enough, he would eat Oaty-O's and they're darn crunchy.  Suffice it to say, his whole Sunday was messed up.  He work up early and ate a very small breakfast but then seemed okay and played up a storm but then fell asleep later than usual but stirred at lunch.  We sat him in front of his meal and but he was obviously not done napping.  So during what would turn out to be a 3 hour nap through lunch, I caved in and made him a pizza.

Pizza, yes.  I'm not a mom you'll see feeding my baby junky pizza from the foodcourt with all the grease, sugars and who knows what.  We take T out and we are really good about finding the healthiest option. No mystery minced Chicken Nuggets for us.  When I say, I stopped what I was doing in the middle of a lovely Sunday to make T a Pizza so he would eat SOMETHING, I mean I made it all, Crust and Sauce.  And I did it from start to finish within an hour. 

Quick Yeastless Pizza Dough
 Yields 4 10inch thin crust pizzas

1-1 1/4 c Organic Wholewheat flour
1/2 t salt
1/2 t baking powder
1 t dried Basil or Oregano
1/2 c Water
1 T olive oil

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.  Start with 1 c of Flour.

Add the Water and Oil and mix with the fork.  Mix vigorously.  You actually want to build gluten so you can't over mix.   The dough will be soft like bread dough but not sticky.  Depending on your humidity level you may need to add a bit more flour.  When it gets too stiff for your fork, you can use a big spoon or your hands.

We are renting a place right now with a kitchen has no counter space.  D makes it work for rolling but I don't like Flour everywhere.  So you can knead this dough right in the bowl.  Use your fingers and knuckles and give it a proper kicking.  It shouldn't stick to your bowl too much or at all.

Let it rest until you're ready..... meanwhile over by the stove.....
Organic Baby Mother Red Sauce

1 tin Organic Tomatoes, crushed or whole
1 T Organic Tomato Paste
4-5 Organic Baby Carrots, minced
(so I don't have to repeat myself, let's assume if it's for lil T, it's Organic.  I point it out not as a pretension because we certainly don't eat all Organic but T does whenever possible, he's only little after all and he's growing and I don't want his cells reproducing with Monsatano-chemical-crap)
Handful Fresh Basil from backyard, chiffonade (ribbons)
Handful of Oregano, we have so much it's ridiculous, pull from stock and roughly chop
Sprig of Rosemary, it's growing into a bush!, pull from stem and mince
Garlic, local
1/2 Onion, chopped
1T olive oil

Why Carrots? Well remember why I'm making this Pizza?  T has not been eating well because of whatever fussy reason.  So I want to make sure he gets his veggies and vitamins.  Plus when you're using whole tinned Tomatoes, the acidity level can be a bit high for the palate of a little one or even some adults.  Without the roundness added by ground beef fat, this takes the edge off.  Some people at a pinch of sugar.

In a medium saucepan, heat 1-2 T of Olive Oil on medium high heat.  Add the Onion and Carrot. Stir until soft.  3-5 minutes. Add the Herbs and the Garlic.  Yes I added the Basil now.  I'm on a time limit here.  T could wake up from his nap at any moment.

Cook the Garlic for only a minute.  You do not want it to brown.  You want to make sure it all gets kissed by the oil and the heat.  Normally I am not uber careful about not browning the Garlic partially because I'm multitasking and I like the taste of toasted Garlic but it can be bitter and I'm not giving the baby any reason for spitting this out.

Add the Tomatoes.  What I do is take one Tomato at a time and smush it in my clean hands and add it to the pot.  You can add the liquid from the tin some or all.  I added it all.  I should have held back a bit because I didn't have enough simmer time so that's why I added the Tomato paste.  Let it simmer for as long as you can.  Since I was worried T would wake up, after about 15 minutes, I pulled out my hand blender and quickly pulsed through the sauce to break down the bigger pieces of Tomato. 

Baby Marguerita Pizza

Preheat your Toaster oven to 400F

Take the dough made above and cut into four pieces.  You can refrigerate or freeze the other pieces.

Now remember, I do not want roll out in my tiny rental kitchen or make a floury mess when the baby is about to wake up.  Take a baking sheet and spread a teaspoon of Olive Oil.  Start stretching the Pizza Dough in your hands first.  Try to spread it out as much as you can.  Then place it down on your baking sheet and spread out with the heel of your hand and finger tips.  I made the crust quite thin, 1/4inch and 10" in diameter.

Spread 2-3 T of  Red Sauce out on the Dough.
Top with 1/4-1/2 cut grated Mozzarella.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.  I let the oven go a bit long because I was distracted and am not super familiar with how hot the Toaster Oven is.  So it needn't go this brown.

Top with a few fresh Basil Leaves.

Serve cooled down.

I gave T half at lunch and half at dinner.  He loved it.  mmmmm  I ate the crunchier crust bits.


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