Everyone loves pizza so why not make a homemade version of your favourite pizza using fresh, wholesome and traditional ingredients. Making a pizza at home with your family is fun and easy, not to mention cheaper and healthier!
Here are some of the basic ingredients you’ll need for a healthy pizza night party.
1. Rethink your crust
In order to make a great pizza, you need a great crust. Long gone are the days of white crust loaded with unhealthy ingredients. Spelt is the flour of choice for natural, pure dough that’s authentically Italian. Spelt is also higher in protein and fibre and has a wonderful nutty flavour and texture. You will also digest it much easier than white flour. Note that spelt is not gluten-free; if you’re looking for a gluten-free alternative I suggest using brown rice flour or an all-purpose gluten-free flour mix.
2. Don’t complicate the sauce
When it comes to sauce there are quite a few options beyond the classic tomato, but there is really nothing wrong with using a pure roma tomato sauce regardless of whether it’s homemade or store-bought. Just look for a label with no added salt, sugar or oils other than traditional ingredients like olive oil, spices, garlic, tomatoes and sea salt, that’s all you need.
More sauce options include pesto, roasted garlic and olive oil or try no sauce at all if you’re going for something rustic.
3. Try a new cheese
This is where things can get sticky. It’s very easy to use too much or the wrong kind of cheese which can pack in unwanted calories and fat. Here are a few nutritious options for cheeses:
Dairy cheese: If you’re going to choose this type, opt for goat and sheep’s milk cheeses. You can choose a traditional chevre or feta. Be sure to use the cheese sparingly on the pizza because you actually don’t need a lot to get the flavour, texture and satisfaction of a cheesy pie. You can also grate some goat mozzarella as an alternative to cow. You’ll have a much easier time digesting sheep and goat cheese as they contain less lactose.
Non-dairy cheeses: If you’re completely dairy-free, lactose intolerant or vegan, you may want to opt for store-bought cheeses sucha daiya – which is made from tapioca and coconut. It melts really well on pizza and provides that gooey texture we all love (while being soy and casein-free). Then you can go natural and use wholesome toppings such as soaked and blended cashews, avocado slices or you can even sprinkle nutritional yeast on the pizza to get a creamy texture and flavour.
4. Load up on toppings
When it comes to toppings, the sky is the limit. You can choose any veggies you desire. Some even opt for fruit! Have fun with it and choose ingredients such as mushrooms, onions, kale, arugula, peppers, olives, spinach, broccoli, zucchini, eggplant, basil, sweet potato or you can get a little exotic and try pineapple, pear, walnuts, or figs. Make a few different pizzas, so that you have a few different options for your guests! The more toppings the more nutrients so load up in this department.
Pizza dough: Spelt crust recipe
1. Line a round pan with parchment paper.
2. Mix flour, flax, and salt in large bowl and set aside. In a measuring cup, measure ½ cup water. Then add oil, honey, and salt and mix well.
3. Pour the wet mixture over the dry mixture and toss with fork. Once it starts to come together, knead with your hands for about 2 minutes. It should be a soft dough, but one that holds together.
4. Using firm pressure, press the dough with your knuckles or fingers and spread evenly over the pizza pan. Let the dough extend a little onto the rim of the pan. Prick the surface with a fork and then bake for 10 minutes in oven.
And here are a few favourite homemade Chatelaine pizza recipes :
Potato pizza with caramelized onions (pictured above)
Marni Wasserman is a culinary nutritionist in Toronto whose philosophy is stemmed around whole foods. She is dedicated to providing balanced lifestyle choices through natural foods. Using passion and experience, she strives to educate individuals on how everyday eating can be simple and delicious.