Friday, November 9, 2012

Friday Treat

I was so excited last night!  I had something great I was going to post today, something earth shatteringly amazing, something no one could miss, something so beyond wonderful - that I forgot.
Seriously, how old am I?  Senility is slipping in.

So, instead of an incredibly noteworthy word performance today, you must settle for the blank stare of doom.  That moment when all thought seeps out of your head and your eyes glass over and all you can think is, "I used to know what I was talking about."

Mostly it  must be school.  I've been very concentrated on learning, memorizing and 100 word essay'ing my way through class so I can pass and move on.  I'd love to take the II part next semester, but things are already looking busy.  I need to focus more on the kids education; this is a great year for them... 3rd and 6th grade.  As soon as the books arrive, I'm actually thinking of bumping my 6th grader to 7th, simply because he's done most of what was required (but I switched programs).   My 3rd grader is a great inspiration in procrastination and free spirit but he has a knack for math and that's ok with me.   Also, opportunity has arisen to get my yoga instructor certification, and as long as it works out with my other school, perhaps I can make it work.   I'm already getting really tired, so I want to make sure next year is a more even balance and perhaps I can take things one at a time, instead of all at once.

In honor of today's no brainer post.  I'd like to introduce yet another gluten free pizza schematic.  If you'll notice other gluten free websites and blogs sometimes take another recipe (say, pizza crust) copy the whole recipe, and then instead of flour, they write "your favorite gluten free baking mix."

I'm very sorry.

This does not fly with me.

It actually became a pet peeve of mine after I was first diagnosed and found two things:  1. TONS of recipes did the above 'swap' and  2. within 6 months of being diagnosed with celiac disease, most people GAIN 30 lbs.  T-H-I-R-T-Y  The articles and experts caution that celiac diet is NOT a weight loss diet.  I'm going to argue that.  I'm not arguing that it IS a weight loss diet.  I'm arguing it's NOT A DIET.   If you are incorporating rice starch, potato starch, tapioca starch or "your favorite gluten free baking mix" - that is not a diet at all, you're not eating anything healthy or brain/muscle/bone building.  You might as well sit down at every meal and eat a snickers bar and call your day gluten free (that statement alone is controversial, as some say it's cross contaminated others say it's a safe candy bar - that's not my point.)   My point is that all those starches = simple sugars.  They have NO redeeming qualities or health benefits at all other than bypassing the food allergy.

If you've noticed on my blog, you will NEVER find rice starches, potato starches or baking mixes used in my recipes.  I use almond flour, garbanzo flour, cheeses, nuts, butter and vegetables.  I try to avoid grains.  This is a disclaimer to today's recipe.  I try.  Sometimes, you just really need something crispy or sweet and oats and corn tend to be perfect for those things.  Remember, if you're buying oats or corn, make sure it's non-GMO and specifically says "gluten free."  These items have actually been farmed differently and are not cross contaminated during harvest or processing.

Use whole foods, or process your own as you need to.  There are a lot of raw recipes that used soaked cashews which are thrown in a food processor and made into butter... this is still a 'whole' food.  There are no additives, preservatives or any kind of cell splicing going on here... except I guess the physical breakdown of the nut itself.  We'll get more into this as we go.  I tried a 'raw' recipe the other day and got rave reviews.  I'm going to do my usual magic on it to remove the sugars and (it was already healthy gluten free! YAY!) then pass it on to you and let you give it a try.


Getting back to Friday.  Since today is such a great day for pizza, I'm going to give you a new one to try!  There are TONS of pizza recipes online.  No matter where you go, there's the cauliflower crust, the potato/rice starch crust, the no crust casserole type, the veggie base type, the gross soggy try gluten free biscuits kind.  Whatever.

You're going to love this one.  The brainchild of a wonderful weekend, only having a few groceries and a craving for pizza.   If you're driving by Pizza Chain Inc tonight and the kids are yelling for pizza, you know you're going to end up craving it after filling the car, the house and every inch of your nose with that incredible smell.  Here you go, thank me after a great pizza night!

 Weekend Pizza

1 box of whole grain corn taco shells or tortilla rounds (make sure it's gf, preferably made with whole grain stone ground corn, no additives, no preservatives.)
2 fresh tomatoes
1 cup fresh spinach leaves
2 cups of Italian shredded cheese or mozzarella (your choice)
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
basil (fresh or dried)
garlic (fresh or dried)
OPTIONAL:  meat of your choice (sausage, burger, bacon, steak strips, ham, prosciutto, etc.)

Heat oven to 400f.  You'll need a pan with ventilation through it, like a pizza pan with holes or that nice top part of your roaster pan.  This is not an advertisement, it's just to give you an idea.  If you're using the taco shells, break them in 1/2 like little 1/2 moons.  Place as many as you can fit on the pan.  If you're using the tortilla rounds, just lay them out.  Next sprinkle a little parmesan and Italian cheese mix to cover each shell lightly, if you want more cheese, go for it, however, don't make the pile too thick or it will never cook.  I put about 3 taBlespoons of cheese for each shell.  Next sprinkle with garlic (crushed and chopped if fresh) and basil (torn up if fresh).  Next slice the tomatoes AS THIN AS POSSIBLE without adding skin from your fingertips to the one or two slices on each taco shell, or 3-4 for the tortillas.   Try to get them almost paperthin, we're kinda going for a margarita style.  Finally, add the meat of your choice or none at all. I usually do one or two slices per taco shell, 3-4 for tortillas.
Pop in the oven for about 7-10 minutes (mine takes 8).  You're looking for brown bubbly cheese, and nice crispy edges.
I don't even wait for mine to cool usually, I just shove them in my mouth as fast as possible because I'm starving and they are delicious and crispy like a thin crust pizza.  Then I burn my mouth and I go running for a glass of water... So, just be warned, you may have an unhealthy urge to eat faster than physics allows.  Don't fall for it!! It's a tarp!  ahem.  Sorry, the gamer in me just got loose again.

Enjoy and have a GREAT weekend!

(Apologies in advance for the blurry first picture and then the no followup with the spinach pizza...I imagine the day I was taking these, I must have been starving, hence, the no after pictures.  You get the idea.  I just got a different day, different pizza!)

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Did you enjoy one of the recipes or just killing time at work on a Friday? Let everyone know! Also, if you modified a recipe with great success - post it! We love new ideas and delicious foods! Keep it clean and family friendly!