I don’t know about you, but I went a lit-tle crazy with the junk food at year’s end. Not crazy-crazy — there were no handfuls of mini Twix bars, nor any gingerbread cookie fights — but kind of crazy. Mostly, I ate a bunch of crispbreads and brie and cocktail weenies* and swilled gallons of champagne and then burrowed into the couch, warming myself by the woodstove. Needless to say, I wasn’t feeling my best come January 2nd, but that’s cool — I expected that. EVERYTHING IS UNDER CONTROL.
If there’s one thing I don’t like — and god, who am I kidding? How could I choose just one thing not to like? — it’s detoxing. You might argue that I can’t dislike detoxing because I’ve never done it, but I’d argue that I dislike the concept of detoxing, and anyway, you don’t need to have firsthand experience with a concept to dislike it. More than that, I don’t like being hungry. Hungry Kate = crabby Kate. Real crabby Kate.After our weekend o’ revelry, I felt it necessary to scale back my indulgences just a wee bit: not as much bacon, not as much champagne, more veggies, more tea. Vitamins to the max. My plan followed thusly: I wouldn’t stop eating the foods I loved, I’d just add a bunch of healthy stuff to them to get some nutrition alongside my grease. Dig?
Case in point: Detox Pizza. I love pizza! I’ve had mad ‘za cravings for the last week or so and finally (finally) had time to make my own pie. I cheated and got store-bought crust, but used homemade sauce from the freezer and part-skim mozzerella. Topped this pie with quartered Brussels sprouts, fresh black pepper, and sliced Crimini mushrooms, and voila! Healthy pizza.
In a deathmatch between this pizza and Master Cleanse Juice, this pizza would dominate. OK, any food would dominate because syrupcayennelemonade does not real food constitute, but you get what I’m saying — this pizza is delicious and pretty good for you. What benefits does this pizza offer? Glad you asked!
- Tomato sauce offers lycopene, folic acid, and vitamins A, C, and E.
- Brussels sprouts are high in vitamins A and C, folate, iron, and fiber.
- Crimini mushrooms provide vitamins B and D, and may boost immune function.
- Cheese is just awesome.
The only thing I’d change next time around is the amount of pepper: as it happens, I did not use enough. Otherwise, this pizza was prime: golden-crusted, gooey, and not too rich.
A few tips for making your own pies:
- Use less cheese than you think you’ll need. For this 12″ pizza, I used between six and seven ounces of part-skim mozzarella (that is, I used a bit less than half of a 16-ounce mozzablob). Truth be told, I could have squeaked by with even less cheese — as it was, the pizza left crazy cheesestrands all over my counter when I tried to portion it. If you increase the amount of other toppings, the cheese decrease won’t be as noticeable.
- Reduce the heat. In the past, I’ve cooked my pizzas at a constant heat. (The package of TJ’s dough called for 450.) This time around, I started the cooking at 450 and kept it there for about 14 minutes, then reduced the heat to 415 when the Brussels sprouts started to get brown at the edges. The initial high heat yielded a crisp crust, but the temperature reduction saved my veggies from getting charred.
And that’s a wrap. My immediate future will be filled with more pizzas, due to extra sauce/cheese (and also to my tru deep luv of pizza) — I’m already stormbraining unusual toppings for subsequent pies. Currants? Shallots? Cabbage? Tune in next time to find out.
*Prepared according to Alex’s family recipe. Damn, those things were good. Fats, oils, and sweets, people, all in one easy app.