Sunday, July 8, 2012

Presto! Personal Pizzas - A Quick & Easy FUN Dinner For Kids and Their Grown-Ups

Last year, while at a friend's house for dinner, I was introduced to a fun and easy way to make everyone happy at meal time. What was common place to my friend was revolutionary to me, and it would quickly become one of my family's favorite dinner menu items. It's rare that I come across something that the kids love that adults can equally love, but I hit the jackpot with this one. We call this fabulous invention "Presto! Personal Pizzas". (I don't think my friend had a cheesey name for her pizzas, but we're just weird like that.) They are simple tortilla pizzas, but until you make them and eat them, don't underestimate them. I guarantee your family will have a ton of fun making these customized pizzas, and they will enjoy eating them even more. Here's what you'll need: Medium flour tortillas, pizza sauce, shredded mozzarella cheese, and your favorite variety of toppings. It's as simple as that! Each person makes their own personal pizza, so they can top it however they like - no more arguing over topping combinations or doing the half & half thing. We set out bowls of all kinds of toppings, from classic to exotic. We've used everything from the usual pepperoni & sausage to walnuts, arugula & goat cheese... and everything in between (ham, pineapple, spinach, peppers, tomatoes, onions, olives...). It's your pizza, you can dress it however suits you. Top the tortilla with a thin layer of pizza sauce (don't over-do it). Then place your toppings on it. Then sprinkle a thin layer of shredded cheese. Don't overkill on the toppings and cheese - a little goes a long way. Bake in the oven at 515 degrees (I know that sounds hot, but trust me) for about 5 minutes. Keep an eye on them. You'll know that they're done when the cheese is melted and golden, and the crust is tan and crispy. Slice it with a pizza cutter into quarters. And Presto! It's that easy. Kids LOVE these - not just because they're tasty, but because they're fun to make. It's a great way to get them involved in the kitchen. The more they help, the less work you have to do (and I'm all about less work). And you can feel good about serving these healthy pizzas because the thin & crispy tortilla "crust" is MUCH lower in fat and calories than traditional crusts. For the adults, jazz them up a little bit with some exotic toppings and a little extra pizazz. I add some chopped fresh garlic on the layer of sauce, sprinkle some fresh parmesan cheese on top, and then add my special secret ingredient on top of the cheese - a dash of worcestershire sauce. Some of my favorite grown-up combinations are: sundried tomato/kalamata olive/feta; cheddar cheese/jalepeno/ground beef; and ham/pineapple/onion. I recently had my nephews staying with me for a couple nights, and we had a Presto Pizza night. These were the favorite combinations for the night: Wesley (9) - mushrooms and black olives Jonah (9) - pepperoni and sausage Levi & Ryder (both 3) - just cheese please Mandi - fresh tomato, garlic, and spinach Luke - Peperoni, sausage and ham My nine year old nephew, Wesley, couldn't wait to get home and teach his mom how to make Aunt Mandi's Presto! Personal Pizzas. So now you can steal this idea from me (like I stole it from my friend) and impress your family with a make-your-own- pizza night that will satisfy young and old alike.

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