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Healthy Living: Pizza

A few of us have experienced folding a thin crust pizza while walking the streets of New York City, or having to sit down with a knife and fork to enjoy a deep dish pizza in Chicago. Pizza is constantly evolving and, depending on where you are, pizza can be vastly different.

If you were King Umberto I or Queen Margherita visiting Naples in 1889, you would have enjoyed a simple but delicious pizza made by Raffaele Espositio. Raffaele’s pizza resembled the Italian flag with white mozzarella cheese, green basil and red tomatoes. This pizza is now known as Pizza Margherita.

About a month ago, I was visiting some friends in San Antonio. As soon as I walked through the door after a six-hour drive, they insisted we go to their favorite local pizza place. Being hungry from the drive and always open to eating local food, I hopped in the car. My friend, Kim, kept telling me how fresh and amazing this pizza was. The pizza was simply fresh tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese and fresh basil. It was amazing. After coming home, I quickly learned this was the same pizza Raffaele made the king and queen.

Wanting to share this fresh pizza with my family, I decided to make it one Sunday. I like to make everything as homemade as possible, so I was searching for a homemade wheat pizza crust. After having hungry faces staring at me, I knew I could not wait for the crust to rise, so I looked for a recipe that did not require 45 minutes of rising time. After a few tweaks I had a quick, delicious pizza crust. I added diced tomatoes, mozzarella cheese and fresh basil and the pizza was a hit. My whole family loved it and it took me no time to make a fresh homemade pizza.

Margherita Pizza
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Serves: 4

1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1/4 cup Food Club all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp Food Club salt
1/2 tsp Food Club sugar
1 (1/4 oz) pkg rapid rise yeast
3/4 cup water (100° F to 110° F)
1 Tbs Food Club olive oil
1 Tbs dried Italian seasoning
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano
1 cup shredded 2% mozzarella cheese
1 (2/3 oz) pkg Full Circle fresh basil

Preheat oven to 450° F. Spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. In the bowl of a standing mixer, add flours, salt, sugar and yeast; mix until well combined.

Slowly add warm water until mixture is well combined.

Mix dough two to three minutes, or until dough has formed a ball and is no longer sticky. If dough remains sticky, add 2 TBS of all-purpose flour.

Form dough into a ball and coat ball with olive oil. Roll pizza dough out on baking sheet until dough fits pan. Sprinkle dried Italian seasoning onto crust.

Bake crust for two to three minutes. Remove crust from oven and spread diced tomatoes over crust. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese over tomato mixture. Bake pizza 10 to 12 minutes. Add basil leaves to pizza and slice.

Nutritional Information: Calories per Serving: 323, Fat: 11 g (4 g Saturated Fat), Cholesterol: 18 mg, Sodium: 450 mg, Carbohydrates: 43 g, Fiber: 3 g, Protein: 4 g

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