Friday, June 13, 2014

White Pizza with Tomato & Basil

Give me a crunchy freshly baked baguette, fluffy pancakes drizzled with maple syrup, or brick oven pizza and I will swoon. I love carbs. Yet I believe that moderation is the key to health and happiness, and these foods are special treats and not daily indulgences. That way, when I do splurge on a real bowl of pasta, I savor every bite. 

Many of our cardiac patients are looking for ways to clean up their plates, and in search of simple advice. I put together this list as a grocery store guide. Print the list, and keep the white stuff out of the shopping cart. Shop on the perimeter, and be mindful of the sugar content in "low fat" foods - often the full fat option is actually healthier. Splurge on occasion, and when you do, enjoy every delicious bite!
Tonight I made this white pizza and used fresh basil from my garden for the pesto. Instead of pizza dough, I used a flat-out wrap for a healthier version that still had delicious flavor and toppings.

White bread substitutes
- Flat-out wraps, triple health or whole grain english muffins, Joseph’s lavash wraps
- Arnold's whole wheat sandwich thins
- Ezekiel bread (sold in Organic frozen section of grocery store)
- Lettuce leaves or a “burger bowl” instead of burger buns

White pasta substitutes
- Whole wheat pasta or low-carb pasta (dreamfields)
- Veggie ribbons – make zucchini noodles or squash noodles (I have this Paderno for spiral 
   veggie noodles and love it)
- Spaghetti squash
- Soba noodles

White rice substitutes
- Brown rice
- Quinoa
- Cauliflower rice

White Pizza with Tomato & Basil
1 flat out wrap
3-4 Tbsp pesto (I used the basil pesto from prior post)
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
Mascarpone cheese (a few dollops)
5-6 slices of tomato
Freshly ground black pepper
Basil, julienned

*these may be my all time favorite summer pizza toppings, and would work on homemade dough, naan bread, or any pizza. I discovered mascarpone cheese in Italy and they often dollop the cheese on pizza, and it was life changing! 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees with a baking sheet or pizza stone inside the oven. Bake flat-out wrap for 2 minutes, then add toppings. 

Spread pesto evenly over pizza crust, leaving a 1 inch border around the edge. Sprinkle the crust with mozzarella and evenly dollop the mascarpone cheese by teaspoons around the pizza. Top with sliced tomatoes and black pepper. Slide the pizza onto the baking sheet and bake until the cheese starts to melt (3-5 minutes). Remove pizza from oven and top with fresh basil prior to serving.

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