I shared recently about our shift to a “real food” diet. I have honestly had so much fun cooking food the old-fashioned way. I do not want to share this story about our slow-food pizza to tell you that I am a “super-mom” or that I am so amazing for doing these things from scratch. I want to share this story because it felt like a success and a joy for me. This was a recipe for Barbecue Chicken Pizza from our Nourished Kitchen Meal Plan. In the past, I would never have considered a recipe with so many elements that had to be done ahead of time. But, after a few months of cooking traditional foods, it somehow seemed doable to me. Doing things one step at a time and not feeling like I had to take on everything at once has really helped me to stick with this new way of eating.
First, the recipe called for sourdough starter, which I had had started and kept alive for several months. So, that was no problem. Second, the recipe called for “whey” – the liquid part of yogurt that can be strained out. Since I had been making my own yogurt for months, I knew I could make enough to include this project. I had also separated out yogurt cheese from whey a few times, and did not feel overwhelmed by that process. Next, the recipe required that I use the whey to ferment some homemade barbecue sauce several days before making the pizza. I planned ahead and made the delicious-smelling sauce a day or two before pizza-day, mixed it with whey, and put it an a mason jar on my counter to ferment.
When the day for pizza arrived, I started earlier in the day mixing my dough and letting it rise – all those good rhythms I have learned from making Sabbath bread every week. Then, I used the yogurt cheese to make a dip and cut up fresh veggies to go with it. An hour or so before dinner, I formed the crust, sauteed chicken and onions, grated cheese, and then put the pizza together. It was actually fairly quick and simple at that point. And, the pizza was fantastic. So, fantastic, in fact, that I made another one the next day for a party. All the prep work had been done in the week before, so it was simple to make another one!
I love the process, the waiting, and the satisfaction of making food completely from scratch. It is definitely more work and more planning, but I’m really begin to enjoy it! I even feel less stressed when I spread the preparation into small pieces throughout the week instead of cooking for a long period of time just before dinner. And even better, we are all feeling healthier and stronger eating these traditional foods.
Also, the flowers in the picture were a special gift from my family for Mothers Day. Aren’t they lovely?