Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Turkey Pepperoni, Red Pepper, and Purple Asparugus Whole Wheat Pizza

Many people think that pizza is a "bad food" when really most everything on a pizza can be a healthy choice.  You have your carbohydrates, protein, and fat all in one dish.  The more veggies you can add to it, the more nutritious it will be!  Pizza in moderation (one or two smaller pieces) can fit into a balanced diet.  So don't fear the pizza, just enjoy it and eat mindfully!  Starting with a salad helps slow down your pace and fills out the meal a little so you don't go back for a third, or dare I say, a fourth piece.

When I saw purple asparagus in the supermarket today, I couldn't resist not buying it.  Originally I was going to use it in a creamy garlic pasta dish, but then thought it would be better as a topping for a whole wheat pizza.  Making pizza at home is so easy and far cheaper than getting it from a pizzeria.  Plus you'll save a ton of calories if you don't load it up with extra cheese and meat.  Opt for mostly vegetables, and choose a lean meat (chicken breast or turkey pepperoni or sausage) for a healthier pie!

Making your own crust: Buying premade pizza dough at the store is a quick, convenient way to make pizza.  (A whole lot healthier than the frozen pizzas).  Look for whole wheat if possible!  Making your own crust is even cheaper than buying it premade and it is pretty simple.  I always double the batch so I can freeze one dough for another time.  It stays good for about 2 months!  Then I only have to clean up one mess instead of two!

Turkey Pepperoni and Vegetable Whole Wheat Pizza
 Makes 8 slices

  • 3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 package quick-rising yeast, (2 1/4 teaspoons), such as Fleischmann's RapidRise
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2-2/3 cup hot water, (120-130°F)
  1. Combine whole-wheat flour, all-purpose flour, yeast, salt and sugar in a food processor; pulse to mix. Combine hot water and oil in a measuring cup. With the motor running, gradually pour in enough of the hot liquid until the mixture forms a sticky ball. The dough should be quite soft. If it seems dry, add 1 to 2 tablespoons warm water; if too sticky, add 1 to 2 tablespoons flour. Process until the dough forms a ball, then process for 1 minute to knead.
  2. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Coat a sheet of plastic wrap with cooking spray and place it, sprayed-side down, over the dough. Let the dough rest for 10 to 20 minutes before rolling.  Roll into a circle.
Remaining Ingredients:
1/2 cup marinara or pizza sauce (low sodium if possible)
1 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 cup of shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
25 slices of turkey pepperoni, sliced thin
5 stalks of asparagus, sliced
1 small onion, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/4 cup banana peppers
1/2 tsp dried oregano
Crushed red pepper, to taste

Directions: Preheat the oven to 425.  Mix the garlic into the sauce and spread the sauce over the pizza crust. Top with cheese and toppings.  Bake at 425 for 18 minutes or until the crust is golden. Serve with a tossed salad.  

Nutrition Facts: 1 slice
190 calories, 23 g carbohydrates, 13 g protein, 6 g fat, 4 g fiber, 620 mg sodium

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