Thursday, May 1, 2008
A long time ago, I figured out that the best food in the world is the food cooked by somebody else. At nearly the same time, I figured out that the best way to get the man of the house to do the cookin' is to grill out. So, in the name of getting out of my share of the cooking, I've figured out how to grill almost everything. Especially pizza. Now my husband makes pretty much the best pizza on the planet. I mean look at the oozy, crisp goodness up there in the picture. He's been experimenting for years and really has the technique down pat.
I had to laugh a little bit, when one of my newfound LA friends mentioned that he has a pizza oven in his back yard. Don't get me wrong, pizza ovens are FABULOUS! They are also like elebendy hundred dollars. Nope, our high-tech pizza grilling gear includes a glass of water, an old cutting board, and a dilapidated Weber grill. We from the Midwest tend to channel our inner MacGyver a little more often before we invest in a lot of expensive gear.
So chalk this juicy little beauty up in the "cheep thrills" category for sure.
Here's the recipe:
The Fat Chick's Grilled Margarita Man Pizza
1 bag Plain pizza dough from Trader Joes
3-4 very ripe tomatoes sliced into discs
1 cup basil leaves torn into small pieces
2T olive oil
1.5 cups shredded parmesano reggiano cheese
Flour for dusting
Yield, 2 medium sized pizzas. Start your charcoal grill. It needs to be VERY hot in order to work properly. Take the dough out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter for about 20 minutes. Remove the dough from the plastic bag and turn it out onto a lightly floured board. Cut the dough into two pieces. Roll or stretch out each piece of the dough until you have created a thin circle roughly 14-inches in diameter. Put each piece of dough on a separate, floured cutting board or pizza board. Now, before you begin, make sure that all of your other ingredients are right next to the grill and ready to go. You'll need to move quickly (believe me.) When your grill is roaring hot, take each of the rolled out crusts and gently slide them onto the grill next to each other but not touching. Now slam the lid of the Weber down and let the pizza grill for a minute or two (you'll know it's right when the upper surface of the dough bubbles up with some pretty big air bubbles). Now this is the tricky bit, before it gets really too black on the bottom, flip those pizza crusts over and QUICKLY throw on the toppings. You've literally got less than a minute to get this done. Lay down a little olive oil (we find that a pouring bottle with a very small spout works best), lay down those tomato slices, sprinkle the basil over and the cheese on top of that. Now slam down the lid again and cook for another 4-6 minutes or so. To get a really crisp and chewy authentic crust, throw about 2 cups of cold water on the fire for the last 1-2 minutes of cooking. CAUTION, this is the dangerous part--don't burn yourself on the steam, don't dump the water ON the pizza and don't drop the glass. You're looking for golden brown here. But the difference between golden brown and very black is a very short period indeed. Take it out and enjoy. Or throw it out and call the pizza boy. (It WILL take a few tries before you get it right.)
Let me know how it goes.
Monday, April 28, 2008
I recently read an article in the New York Times that claims if you exert significant will power in one area in your life, will power tends to slip in other areas. (Read it HERE.) This makes sense to me. I mean if I have the power to go and walk/run 4 miles, I have to admit the power to avoid chocolate completely escapes me. And if I manage to avoid chocolate (especially chocolate chip cookies), well then I barely have the will to live, so much go out and do a yoga class.
Does this mean that I am doomed to only achieve one goal in my life? Um, Noooooo. But it does mean that I can really only effectively accomplish one thing at a time. This frustrates the multitasker in me to no end. But in a way, it's important validation. I have found that multitasking usually means trying to do a bunch of things at once, very poorly. And by time I factor in all the corrections, it really takes the same amount of time as doing the tasks sequentially. Now this is ME I'm talking about. Some people (especially Moms) seem able to have a cell phone conversation, break up the kids fight, cook dinner, and do 3 loads of wash simultaneously. I guess I'm just not one of those people. But the good news is, eventually these will power items become habits that I don't have to think too hard about any more--allowing me to move on to the next item.
In any case, as I was ENTIRELY too lazy to exercise beyond a tiny little dance session in the morning on Friday, at least I have this relatively healthy summer yumminess in the plus column. This is my take on the typical melon and prosciutto salad. I like to serve it with VERY fresh melon, prosciutto torn into small pieces and scattered over the top (to make it easier to eat), the juice of half a fresh lemon squeezed over the top, and finely minced mint right out of the garden. Now if this doesn't say summer, I don't know what. The Midwesterner in me is appalled to think about April being summer. But however reluctant I may be in embracing my new LA home, I guess I'm just accepting it.
So, my dear friends I'm encouraging you to pick a single, teeny-tiny focus for your will power--and work it with all your might.
Cause peeps, nothing breeds success, like success.
Posted by The Fat Chick at 6:16 PM
Friday, April 18, 2008
Our society seems obsessed with bellies. "Let them be slender." "Let them be rock hard." "Let them be defined into a 6 or 8 pack of mean little muscles." And while a few of us are genetically or psychologically disposed to this sort of "abs", alas many of us are not. Which causes far too many of us to be mean to our bellies. Our soft underside. The holder of cookies and cradle for our potential children. We stuff them into too-tight jeans, we smush them under girdles, we suck them in and hold our breath. And we can't breathe. Which is sad, because life is so much better when you chuck your control top pantyhose and just
b r e a t h e...
That's why I was so excited when I got an email from the Fat PDX. Seems they are holding a BELLY UP event in June or July which will encourage people of all ages, shapes, sizes and dispositions to bare their bellies for the camera. Woooo Hoooo! In the spirit of the thing, hundreds have already submitted belly pictures showing off their middle parts. You can see them in the Bellies Are Beautiful gallery here. And you can help support that great event by contributing $5 or more and earning the special patch shown above. Now this is one merit badge I'm PROUD to own.
So whether you're sporting a six-pack or a keg, take a picture and send it on in. And remember, it's never too late to love the skin you're in.
The Fat Chick
Posted by The Fat Chick at 3:31 PM