Monday, February 6, 2012

A Taste of Summer

A bouquet of fresh basil has an especially summery fragrance during the winter months.
We bought this bouquet, which was grown in a hothouse on an organic farm here in the Pacific Northwest, to enjoy as a mid-winter treat. 

And a jar of garden tomatoes (our last jar canned from this past summer's crop!) possesses an especially sweet summer taste as the cold outdoors whisper nothing but quiet in the still sleep of winter dormancy. 

One of our favorite meals to make with fresh basil and summer tomatoes is Pizza Margherita. 

For the sauce, we simmer tomatoes down to preferred thickness. 
As the tomatoes are simmering, we add salt and pepper and Italian seasonings. 

Pizza dough recipe (makes two crusts): 

1 package yeast
1 tablespoon honey
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup wrist temperature water
2 1/2 cups or so of flour (we use a combination of all-purpose and spelt)
olive oil to drizzle on top

Combine yeast, honey, and water in a large bowl. Once the yeast has activated, add salt. Then add flour in 1/2 cup increments and knead until dough is very slightly moist on the surface. Place dough in large bowl, drizzle with oil, and place in warm spot to rise for an hour or more.

Roll out the crust onto floured pizza pan and bake at 425 until just slightly golden. 

Remove from oven and drizzle olive oil over crust and top with fresh tomato sauce. 

Add fresh basil. 

Top with shredded Italian cheeses. 

Bake at 425 until done. 

After reading recent articles such as this one in the Huffington Post, we've held off on buying food packaged in cans. I stopped buying tomato products packaged in cans several months ago but just recently learned that all canned goods may be in danger of absorbing the BPA lining. 
See New York Times article here

I thought I'd pass the information along to anyone who may be interested. 


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