Sunday, October 6, 2013

Fun Food


When my husband was a teenager, he worked at CiCi's Pizza.  His favorite thing there was taco pizza.  He didn't like, however, the fact that, since it was a buffet, people would stack up multiple plates on the tables. I can imagine his frustration.  Sometimes it feels like that here, except there are tons of dishes stacked in the sink.  But, alas, that's a mom's lot in life.

Do you order takeout pizza often?  Our kids ask us all the time to order pizza.  But, by the time we get what everyone likes (everyone likes something different), plus wings (three different kinds), we end up spending almost $50.  So, for me, it's better to make it homemade.  And the topping options are endless.  Plus, you know exactly what is going into your food.

Now, I've done a taco burger before, so why not a taco pizza?  I often like to make interesting versions of food, like barbecue potstickers.  If you haven't ever had taco pizza, you're in for a real treat.  This one has an easy homemade crust and an even easier homemade sauce. Topped with taco meat, jalapenos, black olives, lettuce, sour cream, tomatoes and more cheese, this is a darn tasty dish!  My husband loved this pizza.  I think you will too.

Grab some napkins.  This is messy.

TACO PIZZA
FOR THE DOUGH:
1 packet highly active yeast
1 1/4 C warm water, about 110 degrees
2 T olive oil
3 to 3 1/2 C all purpose flour
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt

FOR THE SAUCE:
1 onion, chopped
2 serranos, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 T cilantro, chopped
One 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 T cumin
1 T chili powder
1 T garlic powder

FOR THE PIZZA:
1 lb ground beef
1 packet taco seasoning
Jalapeno slices
Black olives
Chopped lettuce
Chopped tomatoes
Shredded cheddar cheese
Sour cream
2 T butter, melted
2 teaspoons garlic powder

For the dough, put the yeast, water, and sugar in a stand mixer and let sit until a little frothy.  (If you don't have a stand mixer, it's okay.  Put it in a bowl and whisk.)  Add in the olive oil, salt, and 3 cups of flour.  Knead until it becomes a ball.  If it seems sticky or too wet, add in the rest of the flour.  Place the ball in a large bowl sprayed with pan spray and cover tightly.  Set it on the stove (all burners off, of course).  A trick to help it rise...Preheat your oven to 200 degrees, then turn it off.  Open the door.  When you can touch the racks without burning yourself, place the bowl of dough in the oven and close the door.  Your dough should be ready in about an hour.  Divide your dough in two equal pieces.  Roll the dough out into large circles or rectangles.  You will have two large pizzas.

To make the sauce, cook the onion and serrano peppers in a drizzle of olive oil until tender.  Add in the remaining sauce ingredients and simmer on medium low heat for about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Brown the ground beef and add in the taco seasoning according to package directions. Drain if necessary.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.  Spread some sauce on the dough.  Top with the taco meat, jalapenos, black olives, and cheese.  Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the dough is cooked through and the edges are browned.  Mix the melted butter with the garlic powder and brush the edges of the pizza dough.

Top the pizza with the lettuce, sour cream, tomatoes, more cheese, and remaining sauce, if desired.

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