Pizza pizza!

Many of you have been over to our place and made your own pizza.. whether it be from our pizza parties or someone was craving pizza and asked if they could make their own. No matter how you’ve experienced it, it all starts with the pizza stone. We purchased the one from Williams-Sonoma and so far it has been awesome.

It took some time to accept the fact that it would not remain clean forever- I say it’s got character now. And it also took some time to perfect the temperature and timing of the pizzas-15 minutes at 395 degrees.

We’ve made our own pizza dough recipe from Silver Spoon or just random websites online. But the quickest and easiest way is to go to your local Trader Joe’s and buy their premade pizza dough (wheat, regular, or foccacia). It’s only $1.29/bag and works great for those last minute meals when you don’t want to wait 4 hours for your dough to rise.

As for ingredients, our staples are onions, mushrooms, tomatoes. We’ll vary the prosciutto, jalapenos, bell peppers, or whatever else we’re feeling like. We pick up a bag of shredded mozzarella from TJ’s and their tomato paste. We decided tomato paste is better than the pizza sauce.

Some pizza stone tips:

1. Clean using only water and baking soda. You don’t want food tasting/smelling like soap!

2. Parchment paper should be used for everything! Roll the pizza dough right on, and then throw it in.

3. Pizza stone is SUPER HOT! Careful not to touch. Use a wooden pizza peel to move the pizza in and out.

4. You can leave the pizza stone in the oven- no need to take out and put in everytime. It actually helps regulate the oven.

5. If you cook other items in the oven prior to making pizza, the stone retains all that prior heat, so the pizza temp must be lowered (from 395 degrees), otherwise it will burn the bottom. We still haven’t figured out the correct lower temperature.

Fresh ingredients are the best!

Fresh ingredients are the best!

Looks almost professional

Looks almost professional

Final product

Final product

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And onto the main course…

The main reason for this blog is to blog about all the food adventures Tao and I have been taking…from our own kitchen. We just want to share all the delicious meals we’ve been making with you. If you see anything good, let us know and we would love to have you over and teach you! so here are a few catch up entries from the month of March…


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healthy mac n cheese? no way!

I’ve been getting monthly subscriptions to Food&Wine for some time now, and every once in a while I’ll see a recipe that really intrigues me. In the April issue, I saw a recipe for Carrot Macaroni and Cheese. It uses no butter! I did not think that mac n cheese would taste good without the use of butter. So I gave it a try. It was actually pretty good… sweet from the carrots. Substitutions: Since there was no tarragon at TJ’s, I used cilantro instead. I also cooked the carrots for only 15-20 minutes since I was too hungry to wait.

I also made these Honey Nut Chicken Sticks that are super easy and I got from a Rachel Ray 30 minute meals show. I’ve made these a bunch of times with different cereals. It’s true- you can make a quick and healthy meal in 30 minutes!

Verdict: Healthy mac n cheese is possible! Chicken sticks are always a winner.

Does it look healthy?

Does it look healthy?

it was sweet and delicious

it was sweet and delicious

quick and tasty!

quick and tasty!

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happy spring!

Happy first day of spring!

I’ve got a busy few weeks ahead of me…

-2 weddings

-reunion trip to vegas

-family visits

Let’s hope for some sunnier weather because I need a tan….. :)

Spring

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Leek pockets!

<sing in tune of hot pockets> Leek pockets!

韭菜盒子 or direct translation “leek box”. I just thought leek pockets was a catchier name. Tao and I have never made these before, but I have seen my mom and grandma make them before for me. I remembered all the ingredients from memory.. even mom was impressed remembered them all. Here’s the list: leek, baked tofu curd, vermicelli, scrambled egg, ground pork, seasoning. As for the wrapper, based on our experience with ravioli (see earlier post) , tao got the mix right on the dot. Boiling water is the key. We made enough to eat and to freeze for a later date.

Verdict: SUCCESS!

the inside (all pre-cooked)

the inside (all pre-cooked)

the dough boy

the dough boy

used a pizza cutter to cut the dough

used a pizza cutter to cut the dough

pan fry in oil on both sides

pan fry in oil on both sides

Id call this a success!

I'd call this a success!

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Griddle me this.

Griddle me this.

This post is dedicated to the American Express Costco Card. It’s all worth it when you get that rebate check in the mail every February. This year, I blew it on some picture frames, food, and a griddle! It totally makes cooking breakfast a breeze since it’s all on the same surface. Observe.

makes cleanup an ease!

makes cleanup an ease!

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Mushroom Ravioli

Mushroom Ravioli

Tao and I have been wanting to make our own ravioli’s for some time now. He loves getting the ravioli dish at Tullio’s in Walnut Creek (http://www.tullios-restaurant.com/) and we both love buying the pumpkin ravioli from Genova Deli (http://www.genovadeli.net/).

After doing some research at Sur La Tab, we decided to make the wrappers from a ravioli recipe in Silver Spoon. Tao was in charge of wrappers, I was in charge of filling. The filling consisted of ricotta , parmesan, mozzarella, portebello mushrooms, basil, and seasoning.

The verdict: The filling was good, but we need to remember to use hot/boiling water for the dough to get the chewy texture- more like the dumpling wrapper.

ravioli wrappers

ravioli wrappers

used a cookie cutter for circles

used a cookie cutter for circles

the completed ravioli

the completed ravioli

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me first!

ni hao!

你好!

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