Personally I can go for about one of the day-after-Thanksgiving-sandwiches and then I’m sort of done. I really don’t like having a marathon of Thanksgiving dinners. I mean, Thanksgiving is one day – a great day of delicious food and I like to leave it at that. But with that being said, there’s inevitably food leftover because, you know, you want to make sure you have enough food right? (Have you really ever run out of food?!)
Okay, yes I am guilty of this too.
Yes, I get a small panic and think – what if there isn’t enough food?! (And if there wasn’t what would really happen – would people leave?!) But this year it wan’t too bad – I tried to be conservative because there was just two of us. Instead of a turkey, I made a roasted whole chicken (a 10 lb. turkey for two of us would’ve just been quite ridiculous). But even with a modest chicken, there were a lot of freaking leftovers!
My first thought – well soup of course. Soup is a great way to repurpose some of that chicken (or turkey) – especially the white meat that tends to get dry. Trying to keep it simple, I went to my go-to-soup. I made stock from the bones and just substituted the chicken for the sausage and brown rice for the beans. Easy peasy.
But, okay folks, time to get creative. I had a lot of chicken leftover – who knew a 5 lb. had so much meat! I really didn’t want to get into a chicken sandwich rut. I mean I have nothing against a good sandwich now and again but I was wanting something more exciting. Then I thought – pizza!
But this was sort of a last minute decision – I really didn’t have time to make pizza dough or did I?I did a little investigating and found that you can make a quick pizza dough – no rising required. The result? A crunchy thin pizza crust just the way I like it.
Truth be told, although I’m not a baker, pizza dough is something I’ve made for years. I like being able to make a healthier version of the typical pizza dough by using white whole wheat flour. While I like regular whole wheat flour, I have found white whole wheat has a milder taste – which makes it a good alternative for those who may not like the taste of whole wheat flour. And don’t let the “white” part fool you – this is made from white wheat so you are still getting all the nutritional benefits of the traditional whole wheat.
This recipe makes about two 10″ pizzas (depends how thin you like your crust). I topped one with sautéed kale, mushroom and chicken and the other with shaved Brussels sprouts and pancetta (also leftover from Thanksgiving). And I have to say they were the best leftovers ever!
So how do you like that – two ideas for those leftovers, and I’ve snuck in ways to increase your vegetable and whole grain intake – I can be sneaky like that. You’re welcome.
What do you do with your Thanksgiving leftovers?
- ¾ cups lukewarm water
- 1 teaspoon active-dry or instant yeast
- 1½ cups whole wheat flour
- ½ cup all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon honey
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- Preheat oven broiler.
- Put a cast iron skillet in the lower-middle part of the oven for at least 15 minutes to 30 minutes.
- Combine the water and yeast in a bowl and stir to dissolve the yeast.
- Add the flour and salt to the bowl and mix until you've formed a dough. If the mixture if too dry, add a little water. If the mixture is too wet, add a little flour.
- Knead until the flour is incorporated and the dough is smooth and elastic (may take 5 minutes).
- Divide the dough in two and roll into ball. Roll the dough out with a rolling pin until you reach desired size and thickness. If the dough starts to shrink back, let it rest for a few minutes and then roll out again.
- Take skillet out of oven, lay one of the crust into the hot skillet and let it brown for 3 minutes. I like to turn the stove burner on to keep the pan hot. Flip after 3 minutes and cook the other side for 3 minutes.
- After the second side has browned for 3 minutes, turn off the burner. Place desired toppings on pizza, then broil the in the oven for 6 minutes.
- Let cool slightly before cutting and serving pizza.
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