Homemade pizza with lots of toppings is fun to make and delicious to eat. You can easily buy raw pizza dough in the refrigerated section at most supermarkets and by choosing whole wheat dough, you can up the nutrition factor. You can also make dough from scratch using this excellent recipe from British chef Jamie Oliver. I do recommend you cut the recipe in half, which easily makes enough dough for a family of four or five. Remember to knead the dough for ten minutes and then leave it in the fridge for an hour or more before taking it out for fifteen minutes prior to making your pizza.
While the oven is preheating to 400 degrees, sprinkle a tablespoon of cornmeal on top of a pizza stone or a heavy duty cookie sheet. Roll out the dough—any shape, any size—and place it on top of the cornmeal. Rub a teaspoon of olive oil all over the top surface of the dough. Now add a few spoonfuls of tomato sauce, leftover meat cut into small pieces (chicken, steak, sausage) and roasted vegetables (peppers, onions, garlic, broccoli, eggplant, butternut squash…or whatever suits your fancy). Your kids will enjoy assembling their own individual pizza from a selection of toppings, and you can use up a lot of your leftovers!
(Tip: A cute flavor element can also be made with grape tomatoes—even if they’re starting to look tired. Wash and dry the tomatoes. Cut them in half. Toss with a tablespoon or two of olive oil, a dash of salt and pepper, and roast in a 350 degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes. These roasted beauties will add an intense tomato flavor to your pizza. )
Top the pizza with mozzarella and bake until the dough is crisp and golden brown on the edge (about 15 to 20 minutes). After you remove your pizza from the oven, toss some shreds of fresh basil on top for enhanced flavor. Add a big green salad and dinner is served!
Kid friendly tasks: stretching and rolling the dough, adding one’s favorite toppings, slicing grape tomatoes in half and tossing with oil and salt.
Amounts: All amounts are variable, depending on your tastes. You want the red sauce to be no more than 1/4 inch thick on the dough. For a family of four (two adults, two children) a jar (25 oz.) of red tomato sauce would be more than enough. I recommend at least 8 oz. of mozzarella.