Monthly Archives: December 2008

Guest Post – Pepperoni & Bell Pepper Pizza

Today’s recipe is a guest post by my hubby, Trevor. He is helping me out and supplementing my meager number of posts during my busy finals. Thank you, honey!


For this, my first food blog post, I thought I’d write about a food that’s very near to my heart: Pizza!!! Like many Americans, I was practically raised on pizza. From birthday parties to end-of-the-season little league events to last-minute dinners; I probably ate enough pizza to satisfy a small army.

I know it’s not the healthiest food choice, but it’s usually quick and easy. And, it is possible to make this dish slightly healthier by making it yourself and choosing your own ingredients. This pizza recipe promises to be easy, and both cheaper and healthier than Round Table.

One of the nice things about pizza is that you can put practically anything you want on it. I tend to like hearty pizzas with a lot of different toppings, but for this post the pizza is pretty simple (pepperoni, red bell peppers, Italian seasoning).

For the dough:
2 tsp. active dry yeast
1 tsp. sugar
1-1/4 cups warm water
3-1/3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
4 tsp. extra virgin olive oil

For the toppings:
3-4 spoonfuls of pizza sauce (we like Trader Joe’s brand)
7-10 oz. mozzarella cheese
2-4 oz. parmesan cheese
1 sliced red bell pepper
10-15 pepperoni slices
Italian seasoning to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

My wife usually makes the dough, and uses a food processor to make this recipe even simpler. However, I imagine that you can just as easily make this in an electric stand mixer, using a dough hook.

In a liquid measuring cup, dissolve the yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand until foamy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Using a dough blade, mix together the flour, salt and 2 teaspoons olive oil.

With machine running on dough speed, pour the yeast mixture through the small feed tube as fast as the flour will absorb it. Process until the sides of the food processor bowl are clean and the dough forms a ball. Continue processing for 30 seconds to knead the dough. The dough should be slightly sticky. Coat it evenly with 2 teaspoons olive oil; transfer to a plastic food storage bag and seal the top. Let rise in a warm place for about 45 minutes. While dough is rising, prepare any pizza toppings.

The dough recipe makes enough for 2 separate 14” pizzas. Cut the dough in half and place it on a lightly floured surface and punch down. Roll it into your desired crust size.

Once dough is rolled, place it on an oiled pizza pan. Spread pizza sauce (however much you want). Add mozzarella cheese, bell peppers, and pepperoni. Then top with parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning to taste.

Place your pizza in the center of the oven and bake it for 12-15 minutes, or until the cheese starts to brown. Take out the pizza to let cool slightly, then slice up and serve.

These are great for all occasions, including manly events such as football games and poker nights…or just family movie nights. Enjoy!

Cranberry Scones

Today I got a chance to relax a little bit and do some baking. This was nice for me because I took a much-needed break from schoolwork, and it will be wonderful for our breakfast tomorrow! I decided to incorporate a seasonal ingredient- cranberries! I’d been meaning to make scones for a few days now, so why not make cranberry scones?

I adapted the recipe from a Cream Currant Scone recipe in my William Sonoma-Baking cookbook. The only change I made was to include the fresh cranberries instead of dried currants. They turned out great! Just a warning though…these are not diet scones (not that diet scones actually exist). But they’re very tasty. Here is the recipe I used:

For the scones:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsp grated lemon zest
6 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 cup fresh cranberries, roughly chopped
3/4 cup heavy cream

For the topping:
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. milk

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silpat or parchment paper.

In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and lemon zest. Pulse the food processor 2 to 3 times, until the ingredients are mixed. Add the butter and pulse until the ingredients form coarse crumbs. Add the cranberries and cream. Pulse until the dough is barely mixed. Do not overmix!!

Take the dough out, place it on a floured surface and form a ball. Flatten the dough until it’s about 6 inches in diameter. Cut the dough into 6 wedges, and place the wedges on the prepared pan. Brush the top of each scone with milk and sprinkle the cinnamon mixture on top.

Bake the scones for 13-15 minutes, until they are golden. Place them on a wire rack to cool.

These are best served warm with a bit of jam and a spot of tea. Very posh 🙂

Hope you enjoy!