Pizza Siciliana

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Thoughts Before Reading:

This recipe comes from an old cookbook from the ’70s, Time Life’s American Cooking: The Melting Pot, and covers all kind of recipes from the different cultures in the USA.

I am Sicilian so when I saw the pizza I had to try it. I decided to not make the pizza dough with the recipe they gave but followed every other facet.

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Unlike the familar round Neopolitan pizza,  Sicilian pizza is a newcomer to the pizza-loving Americans. It’s soft, breadlike crust and rectangular shape actually make it a more practical recipe for the home. The ingredients for the garnish are flexible; you can substitue such items as sliced cooked sausage, black olives or anchovies for the mushrooms and peppers-or add any or all of them to the recipe given here.”

-Time Life, 1971

Ingredients:

Pizza Dough

  • 3 Cups of Lukewarm Water (110 to 115 degrees F)
  • 2 Packages of Dry Yeast
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Sugar
  • 8-10 Cups of Flour
  • 1 Tablespoon of Salt
  • 4 Tablespoons of Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Tablespoon of Unsalted Butter, Softened

Directions:

  1. Pour 1/2 cup of lukewarm water into a cup and sprinkle with yeast and sugar.
  2. Let the mixture rest for 2-3 mins, then stir.
  3. Place the cup in a warm, draft-free place (such as an unlighted oven) for about 10 mins, or until the yeast bubbles and the mixture doubles in volume.
  4. Place the 8 cups of flour and the salt in a large mixing bowl and make a well in the center.
  5. Pour in yeast mixture, the ret of the water, the vegetable oil; and with a large wooden spoon incorporate the dry ingredients into the wet.
  6. Continue to stir until the ingredients are well combined and can be shaped into a ball.
  7. Transfer the ball onto a floured surface and begin to knead; pressing the ball with the heel of your hand, pressing forward and folding back.
  8. Knead until dough is smooth, and an elastic medium-firm; (incorporate the 2 more cups of flour if you need to).
  9. With a pastry brush, coat the bottom and the sides of the dough with butter.
  10. Place dough in a bowl and a warm drat-free place for 1-1.5 hours, or until the dough doubles in size. Punch it down with your fists and replace in the bowl to rise again.
  11. Meanwhile, prepare the tomato sauce.
  12. When dough has completed its rising, punch it down and then cut it in half.
  13. Roll out each half to fit in a jelly-roll pan.
  14. Place the dough on the pans and then stretch it with your fingers so hat it fills the edges and corners.
  15. Drape with a towel and place in warm, draft-free place until dough has risen double.

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Ingredients:

Tomato Sauce:

  • 4 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup of finely Chopped Onions
  • 1.5 Teaspoons of finely chopped Garlic
  • 3-1lb cans of solid packed Tomatoes and their liquid
  • 1 Tablespoon of Basil
  • 1 Tablespoon of Oregano
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Sugar
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Pepper
  • 1.5 Teaspoons of Salt
  • 6 oz can of Tomato Paste

Directions:

  1. In a 10-12 inch heavy skillet heat the olive oil, until a lught haze forms.
  2. Add the onions and garlic, stirring frequently until the onion become translucent.
  3. Stir in tomatoes and their liquid, oregano, sugar, black pepper, salt, and tomato paste.
  4. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for an hour.

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Ingredients:

Pizza Garnish:

  • 1 lb of Mozzarella Cheese, coarsely grated
  • 1/2 Cup of finely grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Cup of thinly sliced Mushrooms
  • 1 Large Green Bell Peeper; seeded, deribbed, and thinly sliced
  • 1 Large Red Bell Pepper; seeded, deribbed, and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 Cup of thinly chopped Onions
  • Chopped Sausage
  • Sliced Olives
  • 1/4 Cup of Olive Oil

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven tp 500 degrees F.
  2. Divide the sauce in half and coat the top of the dough.
  3. Bake in the center of the oven for 30 mintes, then sprinkle with mozzarella, Parmesan, mushrooms, bell peppers, onions, olives,  and sausage.
  4. Dribble the olive oil on top and bake for 10 minutes longer.\Cut pizza into squares and serve at once.

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pizzasciliana

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Thoughts After Baking:

Here is what I thought about this pizza:

pizza

It was amazing! The sauce was the best I have ever had and the only one I will ever make for pizza again. It was just so fantastic!

fantastic

You should definitely try this out for yourself!

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For more Italian recipes, go to Italian Wedding Soup

For more recipes, go to A is for Applesauce Cake

Breakfast Omelet

Key lime pie murder

Thoughts prior to cooking:

This recipe is from Key Lime Pie Murder (Hannah Swensen Mystery #9)When I first read this recipe it sounded really tasty, except for one thing: the cream of mushroom topping. Now not being from the Midwest, I can’t stand my meals being too hearty. So I made a few adjustments…

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Ingredients:

  • Non-stick cooking spray or butter
  • 1.5 lbs of skinless sausage links
  • 8 Slices of bread (Any kind)
  • 2 Cups of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 Cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 Cup of finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 6 Eggs
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of salt
  • 1.5 Cups of milk
  • 1/2 Cup of half-and-half, or cream
  • 1 Tablespoon of mustard
  • Sliced mushrooms

Directions:

  1. Spray the inside of a 9 x 13 pan with non-stick cooking spray or rub with butter.
  2. Cut the crusts from the bread and throw away. Take the rest of the bread and cut it into one inch cubes. Toss them into the 9×13 pan.
  3. Cut the sausage links into fourths and sauté them until they are lightly browned.
  4. Drain the fat from your sausage. Put the sausage on top of the bread cubes.
  5. Sprinkle the grated cheese on the sausage, then the chopped onion, and finally the green bell peppers.
  6. Whisk the eggs with the salt, milk, half-and-half, and mustard. Pour the mixture over the top of the casserole. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  7. Next Morning: This takes about an hour to a hour and a half to cook.
  8. Preheat the oven to 350° F.
  9. Take the casserole out of the fridge and remove the plastic wrap.
  10. Lay the sliced mushrooms over the top and place it in the oven.
  11. When egg is cooked, remove from the oven and enjoy!

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Thoughts after cooking:

It didn’t photograph well, but trust me this thing is absolutely delicious.

joker-yum

It had everything you could want in a breakfast food.

breakfast

It smelled and tasted good that we practically devoured the whole thing. I know I will make it again.

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For more Hannah Swensen recipes, go to Chocolate Covered Cherry Delights

For more breakfast recipes, go to Brioche French Toast

For more recipes, go to Lemon Bars

Misdemeanor Mushrooms

christmastree

Time for another holiday recipe:

Sugar Cookie Murder

So this recipe of mushrooms comes from Sugar Cookie Murder and the fictional Lake Eden Holiday Buffet Cookbook.

Thoughts Before Cooking:

I love mushrooms and these stuffed ones sounded so great that I decided they would be an excellent one to try out.

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Ingredients:

  • 2 Pounds of Ground Sausage
  • 3 Cloves of Finely Chopped Garlic
  • 2 Tablespoons of Ground Sage
  • 8-oz package of Cream Cheese
  • 1 Tablespoon of Parsley
  • 1 lb of Medium to Large Mushrooms (Big enough to stuff)
  • Parmesan Cheese (to sprinkle)
  • Butter
  1. In a large, non-stick skillet, combine the sausage, garlic and sage.
  2. Sauté until sausage is browned and garlic is translucent.
  3. Drain the fat from the skillet and add softened cubed cream cheese and parsley.
  4. Simmer for 10 minutes, remove from heat, and cover.
  5. Wash mushrooms. Remove the stems and set the caps aside.
  6. Chop the stems very fine and stir into the sausage/cheese mixture.
  7. Brush caps with melted butter and arrange cap down on a non-stick baking sheet (if needed shave a bit from the bottom of the cap to make them flat).
  8. Fill each cap with a heaping mound of warm sausage mixture and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.
  9. Bake at 325 degrees F. for 15 minutes.

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MisdemeanorMushrooms

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Thoughts after cooking:

These were great! They were delicious and could make a great appetizer or mean if paired with a salad.

The cream cheese might make them a little rich for some, but I’m definitely going to make them again.

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For more Hannah Swensen recipes, go to a Hole in One

For more recipes, go to Gingerbread Men Cookies