Friday, May 13, 2011

Eazy Pizza with Pitas

 I'm a Mom first when I cook. And having picky eaters in the family only reinforces, the thought that it should appeal to those spoilt brats.  My kids love to eat junk food, and when I say picky, they are the remove-peppers-from-my-pizza kinda picky. So over the years, I have smuggled veggies, laced food with them in various camouflages and lied through my teeth so that my children ate healthy.
And the truth is I hate what I make for them. Its always less spicy, covered in cheese (Yeah, my kids will eat any vegetable or animal as long as its covered in cheese and/or ketchup) and has to be cooked too much because my son doesn't like anything crunchy. So the usual choice was Ground veggie loaded pasta sauce or pizza blanketed with cheese, when they decided my usual Indian dishes were boring.  And then one day, I discovered pita bread quite by accident. I thought they were pizza bases as they sold in bakeries all over India and bought a pack home to be pleasantly surprised. Pleasant because, they actually tasted better than the processed pizza bases in India and they were actually made from whole grain, giving them a nutty taste and chewy texture.
And then I was dying to try out this Pesto at one of the wholesale markets, and needless to say this amazing pizza was born.

A pack of 8" diameter pizza bases/ pita bread---about 2 per person.
Grated Mozzarella---  about 2 cups.
Chopped veggies---about 2 cups (shown are baby spinach, tomato and mushrooms, but you are welcome to use whatever veggies you have)
A cup of pesto or marinara
Crushed fennel seeds and dried basil  ---mixed in equal quantities-about 1 tbsp
Olive oil/ cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375 degree F.
Meanwhile, In a cookie sheet or baking pan, flatten two pitas. Try to keep the smooth side down, to avoid toppings rolling down to the oven. Using a spoon, apply a teaspoon or more of sauce on the top side of the pita bread. Arrange the veggies in a single layer on top of the sauce and sprinkle some salt and pepper and a fat pinch of the fennel-basil mixture over it. A few drops of olive oil or a couple sprays of cooking spray will help the veggies get tender-crisp.
Bake for about 7 minutes.
Now take them out carefully, using  pot holders. Sprinkle the cheese on top of the veggies and put them back in for another 6-7 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
Let the pits-pizzas stand out of oven for 3  looooong minutes.If kids are watching, these can be the longest 3 minutes of your and their life.
Slice into quarters and serve. Enjoy!

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