Margherita Naan Bread Pizza

Naan bread pizza… One of the easiest ways to make homemade pizza. I usually top mine with mozzarella cheese, caramelized onions and black olives, but, after seeing this recipe on Instagram I knew I had to try it.

To start, I prepped the toppings…

Next, I assembled the naan bread with all of the toppings…

I then baked it in a preheated 350 F oven for 8 minutes, until the cheese melted and then switched the oven to the broil setting and broiled the pizza for about 2 minutes, until the cheese began to bubble.

After the letting the pizza rest for a few minutes I then sliced and enjoyed it! This is definitely a much easier way to make pizza. And trust me, I’ve tried quite a few different ways.

 

Margherita Naan Bread Pizza

Ingredients:

2 naan breads

olive oil

1 green onion, sliced

2 garlic cloves, minced

8 sliced fresh mozzarella (8oz.)

2 plum tomatoes, sliced

2 slices prosciutto, torn into pieces

6 basil leaves, roughly chopped

2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

salt and ground pepper

*Recipe can easily be halved

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 F degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Place the naan breads on the baking sheet and brush the top with olive oil.

Spread the green onion and garlic over the naan bread. Then top each one with 4 slices of the mozzarella cheese. Top with the tomato slices – season the tomato with salt and pepper. Top the tomato with the prosciutto, basil and parmesan cheese.

Bake in the oven for 8 -10 minutes, until the pizza is crispy and the cheese had begun to melt. Switch the oven to broil and broil the pizza for 2 – 3 minutes until the cheese has begun to bubble.

Recipe from Allrecipes

Deep-Dish Margherita Pizza

While I am partial to a thin and crispy crust when it comes to my pizza, once in a blue moon I want something with a little more bite to it, especially when it sounds super simple to make. A while back I came across a recipe for a deep-dish pepperoni pizza using a cake pan, and with these hot and humid days upon us the last thing I really want to do is make something complicated for dinner so this was right up my alley. I do my best to avoid using my oven when it’s too hot, but, this pizza was an exception since the total oven time was less than twenty-five minutes and prep time was just under ten minutes since I opted to make a Deep-Dish Margherita instead.

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To make things even easier for myself I used store-bought refrigerated pizza dough that I brought to room temperature prior to using. While the dough was “warming” I made the pizza sauce by combining whole peeled tomatoes (crushed by hand), olive oil, grated garlic, crushed red pepper and salt. I set this aside so the flavors could marinate and then thinly sliced some fresh mozzarella. Meanwhile, I preheated my oven to 475 F with an inverted cookie sheet on the bottom shelf and brushed the bottom and sides of a 9-inch cake pan with olive oil.

Once the dough was ready I stretched it into the cake pan, placed it on top of the inverted cookie sheet and baked it in the oven for about 10 minutes, until it was puffy and just starting to brown. After removing it from the oven I topped it with the sauce leaving about a 1/2 inch border. I then topped it with the fresh mozzarella and placed it back in the oven – on top of the cookie sheet again – and baked it for another 10 minutes. When I removed it from the oven I was a little scared that something had gone wrong. My pizza was completely puffed up, but, I allowed it to sit for a few minutes and thankfully it deflated and looked “normal.”

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And I’ll admit it’s not the best looking pizza, but, it was delicious! This may be my go to pizza sauce next time I make pizza!

Deep-Dish Margherita Pizza

Ingredients:

1 pound refrigerate pizza dough, at room temperature

1 14.5 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand

2 tablespoons olive oil, plus an additional 2 tablespoons to brush the pan

2 garlic cloves, grated

1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

1 teaspoon salt

4 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced

Directions:

On the bottom oven rack place an inverted cookie sheet and preheat the oven to 475 F. Brush the bottom and sides of a 9-inch cake pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Press the dough into the pan and bake for 10 minutes, until puffy and lightly golden.

Combine the tomatoes, remaining olive oil, garlic, crushed red pepper and salt in a large bowl and allow the flavors to marinate for a few minutes.

After removing the pizza crust from the oven, top with the sauce*, leaving a 1/2 inch border, and top with the fresh mozzarella. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes, until the cheese is bubbling.

Let the pizza cool for 5 minutes before slicing.

*You will have extra sauce.

Modified from here and here

Chicken Parm Pizzas

Aaaahhh pizza. What is there not to like about it? I have been a pizza lover since a very young age. I can remember quite a few times when I was younger (I am talking under the age of 10) when I didn’t want to eat whatever my mom cooked for dinner so then dinner for me would be a slice of pizza. When I got to college, pizza was one of the tastiest (and safest) things to eat in the cafeteria. Thankfully they switched it up every day with Hawaiian pizza, pepperoni pizza, white pizza, focaccia pizza and so forth. So, what if you combined pizza – one Italian classic – with another classic, Chicken Parmesan? Well, you would get Chicken Parm Pizzas. And no, it’s not just a breaded chicken cutlet shaped into a circle. The key to this classic combo mash-up is using ground chicken to get that perfectly round pie.

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To begin I mixed a pound of ground chicken with Italian herb blend, salt, garlic and onion powders. I divided the mixture in half and then pressed it into two 8-inch cake plans that I lined with plastic wrap. Following that I covered the two pans with plastic wrap and placed them in the freezer for 4 hours.

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Before removing the ground chicken from the freezer I preheated the oven to 400 F and assembled the three separate coatings I would need for the chicken: Wondra Flour, 3 eggs lightly beaten and a breadcrumb – cheese mixture.

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The frozen chicken…

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Which I then coated in the flour, then in the eggs and finally in the breadcrumb – cheese mixture and then placed on a baking sheet.

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I then heated olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and cooked the chicken rounds until they were golden. After draining them on paper towels I transferred them to a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet.

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And then it was time for them to become “pizza.” I topped them with marinara sauce and sprinkled them with mozzarella and Parmesan cheese.

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I cooked them on the wire rack set inside the baking sheet for about 15 minutes, until the cheese was melted and the chicken was fully cooked through.

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While Chicken Parmesan is customarily served with pasta I opted to serve these pizza versions with steamed broccoli.

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Overall, these were quite tasty, but, I didn’t find them to be better than your typical Chicken Parmesan that definitely doesn’t require as much time or work. It’s definitely a nice twist on two classics though. One thing though, if I do make them again I will reduce the salt content in the seasoning for the ground chicken from a teaspoon to 1/2 teaspoon (or even a 1/4) since I did find them to be a bit salty.

 

Chicken Parm Pizzas

Ingredients:

1 1/4 lbs. ground chicken

1 1/2 teaspoon Italian herb blend

3/4 teaspoon garlic powder

3/4 teaspoon onion powder

3 eggs

1/4 cup Wondra flour

1 cup seasoned Italian breadcrumbs

1/2 cup panko

4 tablespoons grated Parmesan*

4 tablespoons grated pecorino*

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 cup shredded mozzarella

1/2 cup marinara sauce

*I didn’t have pecorino so I opted to use 8 tablespoons of Parmesan

 Directions:

1. Line 2 eight-inch cake pans with plastic wrap. In a medium bowl, mix the chicken, 1 tsp. herb blend, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. each garlic and onion powders. Divide chicken mixture and press into the prepared pans. Cover with plastic wrap. Freeze 4 hours.

2. Preheat the oven to 400 F. In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs. Place the flour on a large plate. On another plate, combine the breadcrumbs, panko, 2 tbsp. Parmesan, 2 tbsp. pecorino, and the remaining Italian herb blend and garlic and onion powders. Unwrap the chicken; remove from the pans. Coat the chicken in the flour, then the egg, then the breadcrumb mixture. Transfer to a baking sheet.

3. Set a rack inside a rimmed baking sheet. In a skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high. Cook 1 chicken round, turning once, until golden, about 4 minutes. Transfer the patty to paper towels. Repeat with the second chicken round. Transfer both to the rack.

4. Combine the remaining cheeses. Spread the marinara on the chicken, leaving a 1-inch border; sprinkle with the cheese mixture. Bake until the chicken is cooked through, about 15 minutes.

One Can of Crushed Tomatoes = Two Meals

One item in my kitchen that is completely underutilized is my slow cooker. It’s one of those kitchen items that doesn’t ever seem to make it on to a coveted kitchen counter spot so it’s usually in a cabinet somewhere behind other things, at least that’s where it lives in my kitchen. It’s not like I forget I have it, it’s just getting it out involves moving quite a few things. Nevertheless it’s always worth the effort.

While at my local Barnes & Noble recently I picked up a slow cooker recipe book and immediately went through it and flagged some recipes that I wanted to try. I’m a bit of an organized nerd when it comes to cookbooks… I go through them and flag the recipes I want to try with mini post-its and then write down the recipes on another post-it and stick it in the front of the book.

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This time around I decided to try out the slow cooker version of Country Captain Chicken. In all honesty prior to writing this post I wasn’t aware that it was a traditional recipe found in the Southern part of the United States. I thought it was just something that was created for the cook book. Oops! To start I sautéed a green bell pepper, onion, celery and garlic with olive oil over medium-high heat until the vegetables were tender. I then placed that in the bottom of my slow cooker.

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I then browned chicken thighs, which I coated with flour, and placed them on top of the vegetables inside of the slow cooker.

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I then poured water into the skillet where I cooked the vegetables and chicken and scraped up any brown bits that were left in the pan. While the recipe called for chicken broth I didn’t want to open up a whole can of broth when I just needed a 1/4 cup of it. I poured this over the chicken and then added in the rest of my ingredients: crushed tomatoes, raisins, curry powder, salt, paprika and black pepper. The recipe only called for 2 cups of crushed tomatoes and unfortunately crushed tomatoes only come in 28 oz. cans (Does anyone know where I can find them smaller?) so I had about 2 cups of tomatoes leftover which I refrigerated for a later day.

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I covered this up and let it cook on low for 3 hours and one of the perks of cooking with a slow cooker is the wonderful aroma that fills your house from it. The final product was delicious and went perfectly with just some plain white rice.

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Country Captain Chicken

4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

2 tbsp. vegetable oil, divided

1 cup chopped green bell pepper

1 large onion, chopped

1 rib celery, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 cup chicken broth

2 cups canned crushed tomatoes

1/2 cup golden raisins

1 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. paprika

1/4 tsp. black pepper

1. Coat chicken with flour; set aside. Heat 1 tbsp. oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add bell pepper, onion, celery and garlic. Cook and stir 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Place vegetables in slow cooker.

2. Heat remaining 1 tbsp. oil in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 5 minutes per side or until browned. Place chicken in slow cooker.

3. Pour broth into skillet Cook and stir over medium-high heat, scraping up any browned bits from bottom of skillet. Pour broth mixture into slow cooker. Add tomatoes, raisins, curry powder, salt, paprika and black pepper. Cover; cook on LOW 3 hours.

I wasn’t too sure what I was going to make with the leftover crushed tomatoes, but, after a day or two it finally came to me… Pizza. I attempted to make pizza before but it wasn’t all that successful. Mainly because I didn’t properly cook the pizza dough, or I should say I overcooked the pizza dough so that the crust of the pizza was a little too crispy bordering on hard. I had pretty much given up on trying to make it again until I came across Pillsbury’s Thin Crust Pizza dough in the refrigerated section of my local supermarket. I know some may be shaking their heads at this point by my super short-cut in making pizza, but, I figured it was worth the try. I did have my doubts though… Would my pizza just taste like a jazzed up crescent roll?

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To start I rolled out the dough onto a lightly greased 15 x 10 inch cookie sheet.

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I then spread my sauce on to the dough making sure to leave a small border. To make the sauce I mixed together about 2 cups of crushed tomatoes, 1 tbsp. of tomato paste, 2 garlic cloves finely chopped, 1 tsp. of dried basil, 1 tbsp. of olive oil and salt and pepper to taste.

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And finally I thinly sliced some fresh mozzarella for my one and only topping.

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I then baked it in a 425 degree preheated oven for about 12 minutes and it was perfect. I definitely will be taking this short-cut again when I make pizza in the future.

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