green shakshuka pizza

Well this has been a weird few weeks! It’s the middle of October and I am sitting at my kitchen table, eating a Chrismukkah cookie, looking outside at a blanket of snow, and the sun is out and Eggboy is putzing around inside the house. The middle of October typically means sweaters not parkas, tiptoeing around the mud in socks with sandals, and only ever having Eggboy sightings at random times in the middle of the night since during the days he’s harvesting sugar beets. I guess the Chrismukkah cookie things remains the same though because Emily’s cookie swap is just two months away and I’ve got a title to defend. 

Beet harvest, which is supposed to start every year on October 1st, has yet to start, due to the weather, and as of yet, the fate of the beets is totally unknown. They’re in the ground still and we don’t even know if they’ll ever make it out of the ground. Each day brings so many questions. What do the fields look like after yesterday’s weather event? What will they look like after tomorrow’s weather event? When did I start referring to storms as “weather events”? What will the beet processing plant do? Should I continue stocking our freezer with baked goods for the drivers?? This whole situation is totally unprecedented and confusing.

And another thing that this weather has screwed up?? My trip to New York this past weekend :(!! I’d been looking forward to it for FOREVER and had been building my dumpling tolerance, rehearsing my hotdish demo, and also had all of these plans in place for Bernie’s first nights away from both me and Eggboy (assuming he’d be harvesting). But then on Friday there was a perfect storm of getting sick and the blizzard. And then I was glued to my couch (cuddling with Bernie, at least!!) watching the Mighty Ducks. It was a major bummer but then seeing Bernie’s face on her first sled ride cheered me way way up. 

The weather, the snow, the harvest, the flights!

Anytime life is weird like this, I try to maintain some sense of sanity by working extra hard to eat greens. My green smoothie in the morning, spinach salads at lunch, a few extra piles of kale in my quesadillas, all feel even more important because if life is gonna be weird, I at least want to try and feel not as weird physically. Yes I still stress eat the extra Chrismukkah cookie, but I strive to balance it with an extra pile of kale so that I have the energy to deal with all of the unknowns.

And pizza night is no exception! Sure, there is the salad pizza route. But now that’s snowy, Eggboy and I have been craving more of a hot situation. Enter: green shakshuka pizza. A gigantic pile of greens on a bed of chewy pizza dough and melty mozzarella with runny eggs, all brightened up by a sprinkle of salty feta and drizzley drizz of tangy yogurt. And obviously za’atar. (If you’re the kind of person who likes ranch on their pizza, try yogurt + za’atar!!!) There are so many delicious flavors and textures up in here that strike the perfect balance of healthy-ish and doughy cheesy comfort. It’s also pretty because look @ that oozy egg!!!!!

I am using Our Family yogurt and mozzarella here, two reliable staples in my fridge that I turn to regularly on pizza night. And if you’re coming to my Our Family event in Fargo on Saturday, give me a shout!!! Can’t wait to see you :)


Green Shakshuka Pizza

Makes one 12” pizza

Ingredients

2 tb olive oil

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped

1 tsp sweet paprika

6 oz kale, stemmed and coarsely chopped

4 oz spinach

2 tb veggie, chicken stock, or water

Kosher salt

Black pepper

Crushed red pepper

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 lb pizza dough (storebought or homemade, I love Jim Lahey’s dough)

All-purpose flour, for dusting

6 oz Our Family mozzarella, shredded

4 large eggs

4 oz crumbled feta

Our Family plain Greek yogurt, za’atar, and chopped flat-leaf parsley, for topping

clues

Preheat the oven to 425ºf with a pizza stone if you have one. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, jalapeño, and paprika and cook, stirring, for a minute, and then add the kale and spinach in a couple of batches, allowing it to wilt slightly in between so it doesn’t overflow the pot. Add a good pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, for 7 minutes. Stir in the stock or water and cook for 5 more minutes. Add a few turns of black pepper, a pinch of crushed red pepper (or more to taste), and the lemon juice. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly while you roll out the pizza dough.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured piece of parchment into a 12” round. Sprinkle with the mozzarella and then use tongs to transfer the kale mixture to the pizza (discarding any excess moisture that’s in the skillet). Create 4 wells in the kale mixture and crack in the eggs, taking care not to break the yolks. To ensure that the yolks don’t break, I like to crack the eggs into a separate little bowl first and then pour them on the pizza. That way if I break I yolk while cracking the egg, I can use that egg for something else. Sprinkle on the feta. Carefully slide onto the pizza stone (if you don’t have one, slide it on a baking sheet) and bake until the egg whites are firm but the yolks are still runny; begin checking for doneness at 10 minutes. 

Top with dollops of yogurt and sprinkles of za’atar, parsley, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper and enjoy!


-yeh!

photos by chantell and brett quernemoen

thank you, our family, for sponsoring this post!!

Al Pastor Taco Pizza

I first met a taco pizza when I visited Dubuque, Iowa for the first time, seven years ago! I was seriously into the concept of taco toppings on a pizza crust and got totally jazzed when I moved to Grand Forks the following year and discovered that taco pizza is everywhere here too. Even though I didn’t grow up with it, it made me nostalgic for the kind of tacos that my mom would make when I was little, from the boxed kits- ground meat mixed with a packet of seasonings, shredded orange cheddar, and shredded iceberg lettuce. Super basic. Common taco pizza is essentially that on a pizza crust, plus olives, crushed tortilla chips, and side ramekins of sour cream and salsa. It’s tasty, but a lot of its tastiness for me comes from the nostalgia factor, not necessarily from the fact that it’s an exceptionally good taco situation.

Eggboy and I have had too many extremely good taco situations in LA and Chicago to let this go unnoticed. Our joint dream taco is al pastor, complete with pineapple, cilantro, onion, lots of lime, and tomatillo salsa. (His fave is from Los 3 Ponchos, in Chicago. He once ditched me at a Purim party nearby there to go eat three of their tacos. This was after we’d had dinner there before the party. Where does he find the stomach space for all of this food??) So when his birthday last year fell on pizza Friday, I got to work combining the magic of a great al pastor with the perfection that is Jim Lahey’s no-knead pizza dough. I quickly learned that when you have two perfect things like that, you don’t need much else. I held it all together with melty oaxaca cheese and salty fresh queso fresco, and we just about lost our eyeballs in the back of our heads, it was so good. All of the perfect smoky/sweet/salty flavors of al pastor were there and the doughy pizza crust with the melty cheese took it to a crazy level. The cheeses here don’t overpower, they just bind everything together in meltiness and allow the al pastor to shine. The grilled pineapple makes an entirely new case for pineapple on pizza, and the cilantro and onions sprinkled on at the end add freshness, crunch, and prettiness! I’m obsessed with this pizza. Eggboy is too. It’s 10000% worth the two-day process it takes to make—day one: mix the dough, marinate the meat. Day two: grill the meat and assemble. So as part of my meal prep back in March, I made one and stuck it in the freezer for Eggboy’s first Father’s Day!!!! 

Happy Almost Father’s Day to the best taco eater and Bernie dad in the world! 


Al Pastor Taco Pizza

Makes 2 14” Pizzas

Ingredients:

Al Pastor:

1 (14oz) can pineapple rings, juice and rings separated

1/4 c distilled white vinegar

3 cloves garlic

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp sweet paprika

1 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp ground cumin

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/4 tsp ground cloves

2 guajillo chiles, dried, seeds tapped out

1 lb pork shoulder, cut into bite-sized pieces

Assembly:

All-purpose flour, for dusting

About 2 pounds pizza dough (I recommend Jim Lahey’s no-knead dough)

1/2 c tomatillo salsa, plus more for topping and serving

10 oz queso fresco, crumbled

10 oz oaxaca cheese, torn into small pieces

Chopped fresh cilantro

Chopped yellow onion or pink pickled onions

Lime wedges

Clues

To make the al pastor, in a food processor, combine the pineapple juice, vinegar, garlic, oregano, paprika, salt, cumin, black pepper, cloves, and chiles and blend until smooth. Place the pork shoulder in a bowl and pour in the mixture from the food processor. Fold to combine, cover, and let marinate for 4 hours or overnight. (If letting this sit overnight, this is a good time to start your pizza dough.)

Heat a grill pan or skillet over medium high heat. Use tongs to lift the pork out of the marinade and grill in batches until browned and cooked through. Also grill 8 of the pineapple rings until charred. Transfer the pork and pineapple to a cutting board and chop the pineapple into bite sized pieces.

Preheat the oven to 500ºf with a pizza stone if you have one. On a floured surface, divide the pizza dough in half and roll each into a 14” round, dusting with flour as needed. Transfer to a baking sheet or parchment paper (which will make getting it on and off a pizza peel much easier). Top each pizza with 1/4 cup tomatillo salsa, about 5 oz queso fresco (reserving a little bit for topping after baking), 5 oz oaxaca cheese, and 1/2 of the al pastor and pineapple. Bake for about 9-12 minutes, or until crust is golden and cheese has brown splotchy marks. Top with a splatter of salsa, cilantro, onions, lime, and reserved queso fresco. Slice and enjoy!


mini <3 whole wheat veggie pizzas (freezer friendly!)

I have truly lived out my wildest fantasies this week by baking Valentine’s cookies all day, watching ice skating on the tv, and not even being allowed outside. Windchills in the negative 60s meant that going outside was dangerous (!!!), and so like it’s one thing to have a random free weekend to stay inside and bake all day, but literally having no choice but to stay inside was the cherry on top of these past few days. I haven’t left the house since Saturday. I’m so cozy. My best friend is my microwaveable heating pad and our kitchen table is covered in five types of cookies. I’ve slept better than my whole entire pregnancy combined*. I mean, Hawaii was awesome and all but a snowy week with highs in the -20s?? An extremely close second.

*I definitely just jinxed this by typing it out, right?

So a great week needs to end with a great pizza night, right? This here is a veggie pizza that’s become our go-to, our ~house veggie pizza~ on the family pizza menu. It’s whole wheat, loaded with greenery, and not too heavy, dare I say it’s almost healthy?! We started making it during weeks when we had one too many heavy dinners and then got to Friday and didn’t feel like having pizza that was going to make us feel like poo. So we got in the habit of emptying out our fridge of all of the vegetables and piling them on a whole wheat version of our favorite thin pizza crust (based on Amy Thielen’s cracker crust pizza from New Midwestern Table), which is super easy to make and delightfully chewy. The things that make this pizza great are the nice big pinches of salt that go all over the veggies and the crust (you’re going for visible salt crystals on the crust, ok?), and the order that everything goes on. I like some mozzarella on the base to hold together all of the smaller chopped veggies, like the peppers and tomatoes, and then a little more on top of the kale, to hold it on and to help it get crispy. The kale on top bakes up crunchy and salty like kale chips, it’s excellent. Bonus points if you sprinkle this pizza with ranch seasoning or dip it in ranch dressing.

Obviously, since it’s the season, these lil pizzas are heart shaped. But of course you could make circles, or one big circle, or one big rectangle, or a trapezoid, etc. And they are freezer friendly!! From here on out, many of the recipes I’ll be posting will be freezer friendly since i’m preparing for you-know-who and filling our freezer with easily reheat-able, ideally one-handed meals.

Ok that’s all for now! Happy almost pizza night, fronds!


mini heart whole wheat veggie pizzas

makes 6

Ingredients

Dough:

1 c (130g) all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

1 c (130g) whole wheat flour

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp sugar

3/4 c (178ml) water

1/4 c (50g) olive oil


Toppings:

Olive oil

1/2 c (120g) red sauce

8 oz shredded mozzarella 

2 big cloves garlic, minced

1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

1 green bell pepper, finely chopped

2 roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped

2 oz (about 1 c) chopped kale

2 oz (about 1 c) spinach

Optional salty meat: prosciutto, pepperoni, cooked sausage, etc.

Kosher salt and black pepper

Parmesan, for topping

Crushed red pepper, for topping

Clues

To make the dough, whisk together the flours, salt, and sugar in a large bowl. With a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir in the water and olive oil. Once combined, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 5 minutes, adding additional flour if it gets too sticky. Form into a ball, cover with plastic wrap or a dish towel, and let sit for 30 minutes (this is when I chop up all of my toppings). 

If baking immediately, preheat the oven to 475ºf.

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Divide the dough into 6 pieces and roll them out into thin 1/8” rounds or heart shapes (SEE GIF) and then crimp the edges to make a crust. Place them on the baking sheets and brush with a thin layer of olive oil. Top with sauce (a heaping tablespoon per pizza), most of the mozzarella (leave about 1/2 c for the top), the garlic, onion, bell pepper, tomatoes, meat (if using), spinach, kale, another little drizzle of olive oil, remaining mozzarella, a few good pinches of salt (don’t forget to salt the edges!), and a few turns of black pepper. Bake until the cheese is splotchy with brown marks, begin checking for doneness at 10 minutes. To serve, top with lots of grated parmesan and crushed red pepper. Enjoy!

To freeze these, do everything up until the baking step. Instead of putting them in the oven, freeze on a sheet tray for a few hours until the crust is firm, then wrap tightly individually in plastic wrap and place back in the freezer for up to 3 months. Bake on parchment lined baking sheets (straight from the freezer) at 450ºf for 12-15 minutes, until the cheese is splotchy with brown marks. To serve, top with lots of grated parmesan and crushed red pepper. Enjoy!


-yeh!

photos by chantell and brett!

This recipe was created in partnership with Our Family!

the shameless life


do you guys remember in high school when it was semi-normal to kick off the weekend with a domino's pizza and breadsticks, and then not shower for three days and spend like 12 entire hours in front of your computer doing homework and talking about clothes on the a.i.m. while you drink out of the orange juice carton and listen to ben folds five? 

and then on sunday night you do everything in your power to hold on to every last single solitary second of the weekend?

yes, yes. that was this weekend. just about. substitute the a.i.m. for the twitter, the ben folds for the gabriel, the homework for the article on how to make jewy thanksgiving stuffing. 

add one night of successfully purchasing boardwalk and park place without going bankrupt, sipping marzipan hot cocoa that has been invaded by nougat, and listening to edith piaf on the radio, in front of the fake fireplace that used to belong to joe

top it off with 1 1/2 bratwursts and an assignment to watch all of the star wars movies. {i haven't even seen one full star wars movie. am i still your friend?}

happy monday, everyone!

-yeh!!