Sunday, February 3, 2013

Pizza for 5 and Pop Music for All

First of all, I made some hats for my cousin's twins! This is such an easy and well written tutorial. I have used it over and over again. You should try it.

Secondly, baby!

Lately I have had to come to terms with a few things. Like my favorite pizza crust recipe not making a big enough pizza to feed all of us, for example. This family is growing! And no, I don't mean that we're having more kids (NEVER AGAIN!), I just mean that the boys are already starting to eat us out of house and home.

One time, long ago before I had kids, I was standing in line behind this nice, chatty lady at the grocery store while she unloaded a gigantic cart filled with loaves of bread and gallons of milk and bags of apples and boxes upon boxes of cereal. I imagined she was stocking up for a family reunion or a big trip. "Nope," she replied."I have teenage boys. This is what they eat every week." I feel like I am already turning into that lady, and it's only going to get worse.

Remember the cream puff incident? Turns out Jack really really REALLY hates it when you call him Cream Puff. "Stop calling me Cream Puff!" he yells before stomping out of the room. And then of course Brent and I have to keep a straight face while making comments like, "What's wrong with Cream Puff?" and "Wonder why Cream Puff is so mad," because clearly we are assholes.

Anyway, Cream Puff can really put away the pizza. We usually have a homemade pizza for dinner at least once a week and recently there just hasn't been enough to go around. So I started experimenting with our recipe and I made a few adaptations and viola! Here is our newest pizza crust recipe:

2 1/4 t yeast
2 t honey
1 1/4 c warm water

Put those things in a bowl and set the timer for 5 minutes. Then add in:

3 c flour (here's where things can get a bit crazy. You can use half all-purpose and half whole wheat pastry flour, but I strongly recommend replacing some- 1/4 cup maybe- with vital wheat gluten. I know! Gluten=the devil. But trust me on this one.)
1 t salt
1 t olive oil
1 T yogurt (whole milk is best)

Knead for 8 minutes. I use the bread hook on the KitchenAid for this. Then place dough in an oiled bowl to rise for 30 minutes. Heat pizza stone to 425. Punch down and stretch out the dough on some parchment paper. Top the pizza and slide the whole thing (parchment paper and all) onto the heated pizza stone. Bake for 12-15 minutes. This recipe yields enough pizza to feed our family of four eaters. But I am pretty sure Cream Puff counts for two.

Speaking of recipes, I've also been tinkering around with our recipe for pancakes. I have told you before how much we all love pancakes. The problem is that certain people (Cream Puff, for example) have a hard time waiting patiently for the pancake making process. I am pretty speedy when it comes to making pancakes (I mix the dry ingredients the night before) but Jack can eat pancakes more quickly than I can make them and if I remember correctly, his PR for pancakes is something like 6 in one sitting. So I usually make him eat an appetizer before he starts in on the pancakes. Fruit and yogurt, for example. This greatly increases the odds that Brent and I will actually get a pancake or two for ourselves. I have also found that mixing in a half cup of muesli makes them heartier. Using Star Wars molds to shape your pancakes is optional.


Again with the Star Wars! This doesn't really seem like us, does it? Well, the times they are a changin'. My kids are getting older and even though we were once naive enough to think we wouldn't "do" characters, if your kids decide they like Star Wars, you pretty much can't escape it. And so instead of fighting this obsession, I am embracing it. Well, I am trying to, at least.

It's like Sawyer with music. The kids loves his pop music and no matter how much we've tried to broaden his exposure to the music that we like, he just can't get enough One Direction. And so I indulge him and listen to his favorite station when we are in the car and we switch over to Pandora Top 40 when Brent is not home. I think all generations believe that the music from their youth is better than the music of today. My dad certainly wanted me to appreciate Bob Dylan more than I did when I was a teenager. (See above paragraph! It was not all in vain!) But the funny thing is that one day you are preaching about real music and real talent and the next day you wake up and you're a Taylor Swift fan.

(What can I say? She has a nice voice and, quite frankly, "I Knew You Were Trouble" is pretty much the story of my early twenties.)

So I'm embracing the Star Wars and the pop music. Who doesn't need a pep talk from Pink? And how can you not whistle along with Flo Rida, in spite of his thinly veiled sexual innuendos? And LMFAO, I know I am not your targeted demographic, but I so hear you with the shuffling. Me too! EVERY DAY!

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