Asparagus is one of those things that make me wonder about myself. I hated it as a kid. As in the groaning, whiney, gagging, pushing your parents to the edge of their patience, not like it. But something happened along the way to adulthood. One day asparagus became edible, not only edible but delicious. Maybe I chanced upon it as a perfectly cooked side dish, maybe enough taste buds had died off (they say they change or die every 7 years), who knows. Once it was part of my personality to hate asparagus and now I love the stuff and look forward to its arrival. People are weird. Continue reading →
Deep in the depths of winter there’s nothing quite like popping the lid on berries preserved from the summer. Strawberry season is my favorite time to make jams and syrups. The weather isn’t too hot yet so working over a hot stove isn’t too bad yet and they’re the first berry of the summer so you’re not burned out from all the other products you’ve put up. Continue reading →
It’s here, it’s here! *Squee!* Something about strawberry season brings out my inner gleeful child. They are indelible proof that summer is finely here. I mean sure, I still need the heat on some nights, it’s overcast and raining for weeks, and I’m still wearing sweaters to work, but it doesn’t matter; fresh strawberries mean that summer is here. They are the advance guard for the parade of fresh berries, fruits, and vegetables that will cross our plates for the next many months. Strawberries mean a reprieve from apples and citrus fruits, as fond as I am of them. Continue reading →
Mini pizzas, they conjure up after school snacks and boxes from the frozen foods section. I’d been pondering how to combine bacon and pita bread to make pizza when I found Sundried Tomato Pesto. Why uptown? Sounds uptown to me, pretty much anytime you add pesto, especially anything that isn’t really pesto, it sounds uptown. Plus, it has pita bread.
Pita bread makes an excellent pizza vehicle. It doesn’t really soak up the liquids, just enough to help everything stick, so it remains firm and chewy. The pita actually starts to crisp up around the edge, which is totally a bonus for me. This is not crispy though; however, I suppose if you left it in the oven long enough it might get that way.
How to get the L of BLT on the pizza tripped me up for a while until I decided I didn’t need to be literal. My people tend to call anything fresh, green, and leafy on your plate lettuce. And if it’s not iceberg, it’s usually referred to as Diana’s weeds. Even exotic things like romaine. So I decided to go one step further and actually use weeds. You’ll be seeing more on dandelions in the future around here but if you don’t want to use them you can substitute any leafy green from kale to spinach.
The oven temperature is a guess. I’m lucky enough to have a toaster over at home and at work so I haven’t made this in the oven yet. If you have a toaster oven at work, these make a great lunch item. Put the whole thing together up to the cooking point and then wrap it in foil to transport. Then proceed to make coworkers jealous while you blissfully munch out.
Uptown BLT Mini Pizza
1 whole wheat pita
2 Tbsp. Sundried Tomato Pesto
2-3 slices bacon, cooked and cut into bite size pieces
2 Tbsp. red onion, diced
1 cup dandelion greens torn into bite size pieces
fresh oregano, thyme, sage, & rosemary
1/3 cup or more fresh Parmesan cheese, shredded
Brush the pita with olive oil. Spread the pesto over the pita and top with remaining ingredients in the above order.
Cook in the toaster over or a 400° until cheese is melted and beginning to turn brown.
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Mini pizza’s made with pita rounds had been on my mind for a while. I’d been pondering sauces and wondering what I could fix up that would be different than just plain old tomato sauce when I found Sundried Tomato Pesto in the cold case of First Alt Food Co-op (I love this place, if you’re in Corvallis you should stop by there). I had to try it and I knew I had to make my own. Continue reading →