Grilled Caprese Pesto Whole Wheat Pizza

Grilled Caprese Pesto Pizza

Before it becomes too cold to grill, I must share this goodie with you!  It’s a rainy, dreary Saturday here in Pittsburgh.  That means inside chores like laundry and basement cleaning.  Fun?  No.  But needed.  We also did some baby shopping.  There’s so much out there, it’s gonna take a while for it all to sink in.  And really, there seems to be so much more out there than is actually needed.  We haven’t actually bought anything yet because it’s just so overwhelming!  Soon!

So this pizza.  THIS PIZZA!  You guys, you are going to want to make this!  I have seen many grilled pizzas around the interweb this summer, and this is my first try at one.  It couldn’t have turned out better.  And really, what’s a better combo than tomatoes, basil, and mozzarella cheese?  Classic.  I had some leftover pesto sauce, so you better believe that went on it.  I made this pizza crust.  If you don’t want to make a crust, a pre-made crust is fine, but make sure it’s a raw one (freezer section).  Have everything set up and prepped and sliced ahead of time.  This pizza goes quick!

Caprese Ingredients

I used fresh mozzarella for my pizza.  You can get that right in the dairy section with the other cheeses.  It comes in a ball or brick shape.  Slice yours thinner than I did in the picture.  It will melt much better.  The crust should be grilled about 5 minutes or so on each side.  You will be amazed at how grilling the pizza transforms it.  And the pesto sauce instead of tomato sauce?  Amazing.  I promise.  You’ll love this!  I bet your kids will, too!  I mean, it is pizza!

Caprese Pesto Pizza on Grill

This isn’t exactly health food.  But it is healthified pizza.  We all need a little pizza sometimes.  It’s definitely better than pizzeria pizzas.  And it’s so gratifying to make it from scratch, right?  Enjoy!

GRILLED CAPRESE PESTO PIZZA

Sliced Grilled Caprese Pesto Pizza

Makes 1 16 inch pizza (serves 4)

Ingredients

1 raw 16 inch pizza crust (see my recipe here)

½ – ¾ cup pesto sauce

2 medium tomatoes, sliced

8 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced thin

8-10 fresh basil leaves

Directions

1.  Clean grill grates, and rub with olive oil to prevent sticking.  Preheat grill and reduce heat to medium low.

2.   Prepare all ingredients, and have them assembled by the grill ahead of time.

3.  Place pizza dough directly on grill grates.  Close lid and grill for about 5-8 minutes.

4.  Flip dough over, and assemble ingredients on top in this order: pesto sauce, mozzarella, tomatoes, basil leaves.

5.  Close lid and grill an additional 7-10 minutes, until cheese is melted.

6.  Carefully remove from grill.  It helps to use a spatula and slide a cutting board under the pizza if you don’t have a pizza peel.

7.  Slice and serve!

Grilled Caprese Pesto Pizza Nutrition

Happy, healthy eating!

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Spicy “Kohlslaw” (Kohlrabi and Cabbage Slaw)

Spicy Kohlslaw

Summer has unofficially ended, but it sure doesn’t feel like it yet!  While my brain is ready for winter squash, root vegetables, pumpkin, and soups, my body just isn’t into it.  Well except for Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte.  My body always wants that!  Special shout out to Starbucks for releasing it early this year! 🙂

I do have to apologize for not posting as much as I should be.  It’s now safe for me to announce that Handsome Husband and I will be welcoming a little addition to our family in March!  We are as excited as can be!  Luckily, I haven’t experienced any morning sickness.  Mostly profound tiredness.  My doc calls it pregnancy narcolepsy, and that describes it perfectly.  So while I have barely managed to cook some meals in the last 3 months, there’s been little else.  I’m hopeful to have more for you now!

On Friday, we hit up the Benedum Center for Performing Arts with some friends to check out the Lion King on Broadway.  It’s in town for a whole month, so if you’re local, do try to get there!  It’s a spectacular performance with the most amazing costumes!

Lion King on Broadway

We went to dinner before the show at a restaurant called Vallozzi’s.  I ordered a squid ink linguine with crab meat and white asparagus sauce with prosciutto sprinkled on the top.  I did take a picture for you, but it was so dark in the restaurant it just didn’t come out.  It was spectacularly delicious, though!  And the portion size was just right, too!  I was mostly impressed by the HUGE chunks of crab meat in the pasta.  Real crab meat.  I highly recommend this restaurant if you’re looking for a nicer place to go some night.

So let’s talk about this week’s recipe.

This year, my dad grew kohlrabi in his garden.  It kinda looks like an alien, but they are super low in calories, and great sources of vitamin C!  You can eat kohlrabi cooked or raw.  Today’s recipe takes advantage of the crispy, fresh tasting qualities of the vegetable in a slaw.  I have also roasted it with garlic, which is quite delicious too!

For the slaw, you will need to remove the skin from the kohlrabi.  It’s edible, but it doesn’t shred up very well, so it’s best to remove it.  The cabbage (from my aunt and uncle’s garden!) and carrots add a traditional element.  I replaced the typical heavy mayonnaise sauce with a light lemon and olive oil dressing, making this slaw a much healthier alternative to most.  Watch how much red pepper flakes you use!  I used the full teaspoon, and it was pretty spicy!  Start with half of that and taste it.  You can always add more, but you can’t remove it once it’s in there!

SPICY “KOHLSLAW” (KOHLRABI CABBAGE SLAW)

Spicy Kohlslaw

Serves: 12

Ingredients

½ small head of Cabbage, sliced thin

1 Kohlrabi, skin removed, shredded

3 large Carrots, shredded

1 medium Onion, slice thin

¼ cup Lemon Juice

¼ cup Olive Oil

1 tsp Honey

1 Garlic Clove, minced

½ – 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes

Zest of ½ Lemon

Salt and Pepper to taste

Directions

1.  Toss first four ingredients together in a large bowl.

2.  In a smaller bowl, whisk remaining ingredients together, and pour over cabbage mixture.

3.  Toss to coat.  Refrigerate for at least a few hours so flavors can marinate.

Kohlslaw Nutrition Facts

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Baked Cinnamon Sweet Potato Fries

Baked Cinnamon Sweet Potato Fries

I love all things sweet potato.  So when I saw sweet potatoes on sale during a shopping trip, I knew just what they were going to become: fries!  Sweet potato fries are a special treat at county fairs the country over (at least I would guess).  The first place I ever had them was at the Big Butler Fair.  It was love a first taste!

But traditional sweet potato fries are deep fried and so greasy they practically slip right out of your fingers!  Sweet potatoes pack a nutritional punch, but deep frying them adds a ton of fat and calories that won’t help your waistline, and they’re still not crispy.  My version has all the flavor with far less fat and calories – and the fat that is there is ultra-healthy monounsaturated fat (the kind that lowers your cholesterol!).  And sweet potatoes and cinnamon?  Soul mates!

What’s not the love?  And there’s so much flavor here that no sauce or ketchup is needed – which is kind of like heresy here in Pittsburgh (home of Heinz Ketchup)!  No, they don’t get crispy either.  I’m thinking that’s just the nature of sweet potatoes.  But I’m guessing if you’re a fan of sweet potato fries, you don’t care much about that!

Now go pre-heat that oven!

BAKED CINNAMON SWEET POTATO FRIES

Baked Cinnamon Sweet Potato Fries

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 large Sweet Potato (about 1-1 ½ lbs)

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Tbsp ground Cinnamon

Salt to taste

Directions

1.  Pre-heat oven to 450⁰ F.

2.  Wash and dry sweet potato, and slice julienne style (leave the skin on).

3.  Toss with oil and cinnamon.

4.  Bake for about 60 minutes, turning with a spatula every 15 minutes or so to prevent burning, until soft and browned (they will not get crispy).

Baked Sweet Potato Fries Nutrition

Happy, healthy eating!

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Roasted Beet and Turnip Dip

Roasted Beet and Turnip Dip

I hate to even think about it, but summer is winding down.  It is much cooler in the mornings and at night, and it’s getting dark earlier in the evening.  Before we know it we’ll be back to heavy comfort foods, down comforters, and warm sweaters.  But before you start cursing me out, don’t worry!  I’m not giving up on summer quite so easily.  The days are still warm, and we’re still using them for working out in the yard getting closer to what we want it to be long term.  And there are, of course, still plenty of summer picnics left!

There’s been a shift in what’s available in the garden.  My personal garden isn’t doing so well.  All my squash plants started wilting and dying, so I picked what was ripe or close to it, and pulled out the plants.  That left room for my tomatoes to start getting light, and I even have teeny tomatoes on the vines!  As long as the frost holds off, I may end up with a few yet!  My dad’s garden on the other hand, is as prolific as rabbits!  He’s been in the game for a while, and seems to just know how to do it.  I guess this is proof that successful gardening is far less genetic than it is a learned skill!  Anyway, he recently gave me some turnips, and challenged me to come up with something to do with them besides pickling.  There is this soup that I made in the spring, but August doesn’t desire soup.  August desires potluck dishes and dippables (is that a word?).  Such is the inspiration for this dip.  I added some beets that my dad also gave me for some sweetness and gorgeous color!  Roasting the veggies with garlic before pureeing makes for a caramelized, earthy taste, and some lemon juice provides some much needed tang.  Yes, you can still taste the turnips some, but I think they really add a little something also.  Make sure to leave the skins on the turnips and beets for a nutritional bang!  This is just right paired with pita chips.  They are the perfect hardiness to stand up to this dip.  This would also be awesome on a sandwich in place of mayo!

ROASTED BEET AND TURNIP DIP

Roasted Beet and Turnip Dip

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

6 Garlic Cloves

3 Turnips, cut into 1 inch cubes

3 Beets, cut into 1 inch cubes

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

1 Tbsp Lemon Juice

1 tsp Honey

1 tsp ground Cumin

1 tsp Cinnamon

¼ tsp Allspice

¼ tsp Salt (or to taste)

Directions

1.  Place garlic, turnip cubes, and beet cubes on baking sheet and toss with olive oil.  Roast at 400⁰ F for about 60 minutes, or until turnips and beets are tender when pierced with a fork.

2.  Allow vegetables to cool slightly.  Place in food processor and add remaining ingredients.  Process until dip is smooth.

3.  Chill completely.  Serve with pita chips.

Nutrition Information (per serving )

Calories:  93

Fat:  5 grams

Saturated Fat:  1 gram

Trans Fat:  0 grams

MUFA:  3 grams

PUFA:  0.5 gram

Cholesterol:  0 mg

Sodium:  250 mg

Carbohydrate:  12 grams

Dietary Fiber:  3 grams

Protein:  2 grams

Vitamin A:  0%

Vitamin C:  23%

Calcium:  4%

Iron:  5%

Roasted Beet and Turnip Dip

Happy, healthy eating!

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Indian Naan French Toast with Rose Yogurt Sauce

Indian Naan French Toast with Rose Yogurt Sauce

I have an exciting announcement to make today!  All Spice and Yum has been officially accepted into the Nutrition Blog Network!  The Nutrition Blog Network is an assembly of blogs written specifically by registered dietitians, so you know the information on these blogs is correct and accurate.  To check out some of the other awesome blogs, click on the link on the right side of the page.

In other news, the heat wave has finally lifted here in Pittsburgh, and we’re all feeling a little more lively.  We were able to turn the air conditioner off, and we’re enjoying the fresh air once again.  Just yesterday was our neighborhood’s annual block party.  This is our first year, since we didn’t live here last summer, and it was so much fun to get to meet so many of our neighbors that we haven’t met yet!  There was a pig roast, which is one of my very favorite summer picnic foods!  So much other food as well!  One caprese salad stuck out to me.  Shredded mozzarella, halved grape tomatoes, and torn basil leaves.  Classic combo and oh so tasty!  It poured rain on us at one point, but then it cleared up for the most part after that.  We stayed so much longer than we thought we would because we were having such a great time!  Do you have a neighborhood block party where you live?

I’ve been wanting to share this recipe with you for a while, and I’m sorry for not doing it sooner!  It’s a really different and delicious take on French toast!  I am in love with all food Indian.  I love all the spices they use from sweet to savory to spicy!  And naan.  The amazingly addictive Indian flat bread served with meals.  I haven’t gotten around to making my own from scratch, yet; I purchased this from the grocery store.  They come in packages of two flat breads.  Start by quartering each one.  Soak them in your egg mixture for a few seconds and put them on the griddle!

Naan French Toast on the Griddle

I was worried the naan might not soak up the egg mixture like regular bread, and might be dry.  But I couldn’t have been more wrong!  The bread was moist and flavorful.  If you’re worried about your cholesterol, you can use 3 eggs and 6 egg whites, instead of 6 whole eggs.  Although studies are showing more and more that total cholesterol intake has less to do with high cholesterol than the amount of saturated and trans fat you eat.

The yogurt sauce is a nice change from sugary syrup.  It’s light and refreshing.  The ginger is the prominent, but not overwhelming flavor, and the rose water is a delightful high note for me.  You can find rose water in the international section of the grocery store.  It tastes exactly as you imagine it would!

Try this fabulously quick and deliciously exotic weekend breakfast now!

Indian Naan French Toast with Rose Yogurt Sauce

Naan French Toast with Rose Yogurt Sauce

Serves 4

Ingredients

4 pieces Naan bread

6 Eggs (or 3 whole eggs + 6 egg whites)

2 tsp ground Cardamom

1 tsp Cinnamon

1 tsp Anise Seeds, ground

For sauce:

6 oz Plain Greek Yogurt

½ Tbsp Honey

1 tsp Rose Water

¼ tsp ground Ginger

Directions

1.  Make yogurt sauce:  Combine all ingredients and mix well.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

2.  Whisk eggs, and add cardamom, cinnamon, and ground anise seed.  Whisk until combined.

3.  Quarter each piece of Naan (so you have 4 slices from each piece).  Soak each slice in egg mixture until evenly coated.

4.  Place on preheated griddle and cook about 5-7 minutes on each side.

5.  Serve hot, topped with rose yogurt sauce.

 

Nutrition Information (per serving )

Calories:  277

Fat:  12 grams

Saturated Fat:  5 grams

Trans Fat:  0 grams

MUFA:  4 grams

PUFA:  1 gram

Cholesterol:  330 mg

Sodium:  1512 mg

Carbohydrate:  23 grams

Dietary Fiber:  1 gram

Protein:  18 grams

Vitamin A:  20%

Vitamin C:  0%

Calcium:  11%

Iron:  14%

Happy, healthy eating!

 

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Raspberry Mint Chia Pudding

Raspberry Mint Chia Pudding

We have officially entered the dog days of summer here in Pittsburgh!  I’m not complaining at all; in fact, I love this weather!  But I try to institute a “plant shut down” in my kitchen when it’s so hot.  I like fast, easy to prepare foods that don’t need cooking for days like this.  Chia pudding is just that.  I’ve been wanting to try chia pudding for quite sometime now, and it really couldn’t have come at a better time!

Chia seeds are the new “it” food.  You remember those commercials from the 80’s: “Ch-ch-ch-chia!”  That’s what these are!  Chia seeds are native to Mexico and Guatemala and were cultivated by the ancient Aztecs.  They are a rich source of Omega-3 fatty acids and, unlike flax seeds, do not need to be ground for your body to digest them!  Just one ounce of chia contains 11 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, 18% of your daily value of calcium, and 30% of your daily value of manganese.  Talk about a powerhouse!

It’s so refreshing, and it really couldn’t be easier to make!  Besides being easy and delicious, it’s healthy and versatile, too!  I had just picked some raspberries from the bushes in my backyard and had some leftover mint from another recipe, so that’s what went in it.  Get creative with this one!

Before I share my recipe, quick update on my garden!  I have definitely learned a lesson in vining plants:

Garden Update

This summer, I will have squash and lemon cucumbers.  That’s it.  No more lettuce.  No beets, onions, peppers, and probably no tomatoes.  Next summer, the squash are not going in this particular bed.  Only non-vining plants!  Whoops!  Oh well.  Stay tuned for a million recipes for squash!

On to the yumminess!

RASPBERRY MINT CHIA PUDDING

Raspberry Mint Chia Pudding

Serves 4 (trust me; it’s filling!)

Ingredients

1 cup Milk of choice (I used Almond Coconut Milk Blend)

½ cup Red Raspberries

¼ cup Chia Seeds

1-2 Tbsp 100% Pure Maple Syrup

8-10 Mint leaves

Directions

1.  Add all ingredients to blender, and blend well until combined.  (Alternatively, blend all ingredients except chia seeds.  Stir in chia seeds to milk mixture.)  If it seems thick, add a little more milk.  It will only become thicker as it chills!

2.  Chill for at least 3 hours until firm.

Nutrition Information (per serving – 1/4 of recipe)

Calories:  64

Fat:  3 grams

Saturated Fat:  0 grams

Trans Fat:  0 grams

MUFA:  0.5 grams

PUFA:  2 grams

Cholesterol:  0 mg

Sodium:  39 mg

Carbohydrate:  8.5 grams

Dietary Fiber:  4 grams

Protein:  1.5 grams

Vitamin A:  2%

Vitamin C:  5%

Calcium:  17%

Iron:  2%

Happy, healthy eating!

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Spicy Chicken on a Stick

Spicy Chicken on a Stick

Today is bittersweet for me.  We were off work all last week, and this is our last staycation day.  Mostly, we did a lot of work around the house.  But we did venture out to Pittsburgh’s Strip District for some shopping one morning!  I love going down to the Strip.  I never know what goodies I am going to find!

Farmer @ the Firehouse

This is a seasonal farmer’s market, called Farmers @ the Firehouse (that building on the left is an old firehouse).  We were there pretty early in the morning, so there weren’t a lot of people there yet, and some of the vendors hadn’t set up.  Lot of fresh produce though, and local meats, bread, and cheese!

Steelers!

Here in Pittsburgh, we’re all black and gold!

Stamoolis Brothers

Stamoolis Brothers is a little Greek shop and deli.  Go there.  Really.  Here is the inside:

Stamoolis Inside

In the back of the shop you can buy spices in bulk.  And they’re priced well!  I bought a pound of granulated garlic for under $6!  In the deli part, they were selling olives in large buckets.  I love olives!  And I was tempted.  I might have to go back for them!

Wholey's

What trip to the Strip would be complete without a stop in Wholey’s?!

Catfish

There’s a catfish under that ice!

Heads and Bones

Anyone up for making homemade fish stock?  Hmmm, maybe that will make an appearance at All Spice and Yum one day!

Fresh Fish

Look at all the fresh fish Wholey’s has!

Live Fish

It’s so fresh, they’ll even let you pick it out of a tank and fillet it right there for you!  It doesn’t get any fresher than that!

Public Market

And this is the reason I go to the Strip.  Pittsburgh Public Market!  It’s a farmer’s market, sure, but also a market of all things Pittsburgh.  Local vendors selling everything from produce, olive oils, vinegars, pastries, homemade marshmallows, soaps, wine, beer, meats, and ready to eat food.  You get to meet all kinds of people, and many are giving samples of their products!  The market is currently in the process of moving to a new location in the Strip, so there were fewer vendors than usual, but still worth the trip.

Pgh Public Market Inside

Love this place!

Strip Dist Haul

Here’s my haul!  For less than $60 I got all this stuff; 1 lb granulated garlic, 1/4 lb turmeric, Magnolia scented bar of soap, 3 liters of olive oil (for only $20!!!), Coconut Mango Balsamic Vinegar, and a loaf of fresh baked Ciabatta bread!

If you’re ever in Pittsburgh for a weekend, don’t leave without experiencing the Strip District!  There are a ton of vendors selling amazing looking food on the sidewalks, and awesome little shops specializing in things like kitchen items, chocolate, jewelry, coffee, and food.  So.  Much.  Food.  Seafood, Asian food, Polish food, Italian food, Greek food, Mexican food.  FOOD!

With that, I will leave you with this recipe.  Because what’s not better on a stick?  This recipe is a little higher in sodium than what I typically like to make, but it’s delicious!  And, hey, it’s ok to go a little overboard sometimes.  This chicken is marinated in a spicy soy-ginger sauce before being threaded onto the skewers and grilled to juicy perfection.  Since the marinade is a little higher in sodium, it helps protect the juices in the chicken, so it’s a little more forgiving when you grill it.  Mine turned out moist and delicious.  The spice level was just enough for us without being overpowering, and the ginger was the perfect compliment.  I served mine with roasted blue potatoes, because that’s what I had that needed used up, but brown rice would probably be the most authentic choice.  Whatever you pair with it will be great!

If you are sensitive to sodium, look for the lowest sodium soy sauce you can find, and try decreasing the amount you use in the recipe by 1/3 or so.  It should still turn out amazing!  Also be careful with what chicken you get – frozen chicken is usually injected with a sodium broth, meaning the chicken may have 200 mg or more sodium per serving.  Look at those labels!  And, if you’re sensitive to gluten, make sure to look for gluten-free soy sauce.

Also by special request: nutrition information!  I’ll be working to get the information up on past recipes also, so stay tuned!

SPICY CHICKEN-ON-A-STICK

Spicy Chicken on a Stick

Serves 4 (2 sticks per person)

Ingredients

16 oz Chicken Breast, cut into thin strips

½ cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce

½ cup Water

2 Tbsp fresh, grated Ginger

1 tsp crushed Red Pepper (or more if you want it spicier)

8 wooden skewers, soaked for 1 hr in water to avoid burning

Directions

1.  To make marinade, combine soy sauce, water, ginger, and red pepper, and whisk well.  Pour into large zipper seal bag, and add chicken.

2.  Marinate for at least 1 hour.

3.  Thread chicken onto skewers, and discard marinade.

4.  Grill on preheated grill, on medium-low heat for about 10-15 minutes per side, until completed cooked through.

Nutrition Information (per serving – 2 skewers)

Calories:  238

Fat:  9 grams

Saturated Fat:  2.5 grams

Trans Fat:  0 grams

MUFA:  3.5 grams

PUFA:  1.9 grams

Cholesterol:  95 mg

Sodium:  1512 mg

Carbohydrate:  4 grams

Dietary Fiber:  0 grams

Sugar:  0 grams

Protein:  35 grams

Vitamin A:  4%

Vitamin C:  0%

Calcium:  2%

Iron:  10%

Happy, healthy eating!

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