Dear me – where has this month gone?! My meal planning so far has only amounted to trolling through countless recipe books, writing down a list of great recipes, and building a list of staples/options for shopping.
We haven’t had takeaway once though and whilst we haven’t planned ahead for the week, we have planned each day and made some pretty yummy stuff.
Since starting our alcohol free month I would estimate we have saved over $200 although I haven’t noticed any other effects healthwise.
Here is a list of our meals for the last week – We were out Monday and Tuesday:
- Wednesday 3rd April – Five Spice Beef Stir fry with veggies
- Thursday 4th April – Balsamic Marinated Chicken with BBQ Corn and Homemade Sweet Potato Wedges
- Friday 5th April – Out with friends at After the Tears, an amazing Polish Restaurant in Elsterwick
- Saturday 6th April – Dumplings at China Red (AMAZING) before the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (Hilarious)
- Sunday 7th April – ‘Summer’ Lasagne – Recipe to come
- Monday 8th April – Leftovers
- Tuesday 9th April – Homemade Pizza with Fig, Pear and Rocket Salad – Recipe to come.
I’m going to start with the Homemade Pizza recipe, rather than the lasagne, as it was so much fun to make and turned out much better than I expected. My trepidation was due to an unusual pizza base ingredient, and to be honest – I didn’t think it would work. I squatted next to the oven watching with surprise as it rose and browned and the final result was amazing.
So what was this strange ingredient? Yoghurt. My pizza base was made of equal amounts self raising flour and natural/greek yoghurt.
You just mix them in a bowl – 1 cup of each will make one pizza base – stir to combine, get your hands in there to bring it together in a ball, and then knead it on a floured surface for around 6 -8 minutes.
My dough was a bit sticky so I did need to have extra flour on hand to sprinkle over it. Once it was nice and stretchy I floured my rolling pin and started to make the base – this is where I thought it was all going to fall apart. The dough stuck to the board, and the rolling pin and I fretted. Some more flour was added, and some baking paper was put underneath so we could transfer it easily to the hot pizza stone. I started to roll again and amazingly it became this round, even beautiful pizza base to which we added toppings. In future at this stage I would probably cook the base for a few minutes, as the topping was almost overcooked by the time the base was done.
With a tomato base, we added mushrooms, sundried tomatoes, roasted capsicum, prosciutto, pesto and mozzarella cheese. Some of my amazing twitter friends also offered incredible suggestions such as a caramelized onion base, or a sweet potato and chorizo topping, or potato dipped in olive oil/salt/rosemary. These along with feta, pine nuts and baby spinach sound incredible. Now that I know this base works we will certainly be upping the ante on the toppings!
We took it out of the oven, served it up and with apprehension took a bite. It was light, it was fluffy, it was soft, and overall delicious. My only addition might be a bit of salt or herbs to the base.. The added benefit was that afterwards you didn’t have that bloated ‘I’ve just eaten too much pizza’ feeling. It didn’t sit like a rock in your stomach.
To serve alongside I made a rocket salad with pear and fig, which I shaved some parmesan onto, and drizzled with olive oil and rocket.. Viola!
If you would like any other the other recipes let me know – and I would love to hear if you try this dough!
*Credit must go to Pinterest where I found this pizza dough recipe – it is originally from this site.