So I am back and I’m sure many of you will be happy to know that I had an AMAZING time. I am so sure now that I made the right decision. My fellow MD/PhD’ers are amazing…about six or seven of us are absolutely sure that we are going and we spent so much time over the past few days bonding. It’s really great to meet a bunch of people who you can sit down and talk to for hours even though you have just met. I could not be more excited to live with these people for the next 7-8 years. One of them, Josh, is also a cook like I am so I gave him the link to the blog…hopefully he will check it out. (If so, Hi Josh!). The food on the first day of the revisit (Friday) was pretty good since there were only 27 of us. There was tons of salmon, NY bagels, sweet potatoes (!), etc. Then, starting with dinner on Friday and all of the meals on Saturdays, it was a combined revisit with the regular MD students. I guess it is harder to feed a group of 150+ and so the food went from dreamy to kind of over-cheesy and greasy. It was fine for the first dinner, but I think most of us were tired of it by the next day. To be honest, I kind of just wanted a sandwich for lunch by that point but c’est la vie. I DID have tons of really good rainbow cookies and dried pineapple rings…those things are addictive. I returned to Boston early this morning and, since I kind of felt like a blob, went for a 7 mile run. I feel really energized now and ready to face the masses of work that have piled up.

So these next few recipes are the last of my backlog from spring break at home. I had suggested, upon my arrival, that we have a mini-family party to celebrate my sister’s 13th birthday, which had been on March 10th. I volunteered to make the cake (a red velvet cake…yes I am addicted to cream cheese frosting) as well as some pizza dough. Pizza dough was one of my goals for the vacation because it is kind of messy and takes some planning. I decided to make a greek-style pizza with feta cheese, black olives, and spinach for the event and I used Eating Well’s recipe for the whole wheat pizza dough. Personally, I wish the dough had been a bit fluffier. Maybe we stretched it too thin or maybe there’s something I could change about the recipe. I asked Matt, Kath’s husband (from Kath Eats), and he thought it was the thin problem. I am going to try it again at some point using his recipe since the pictures from the times they have made pizza looked fantastic. The cake was also REALLY good. I didn’t add enough food dye to make it actually be red, but I foresee that it will be made again, so that can easily be changed.

Since everyone knows that kids love pizza, I am going to submit this to Meeta’s Monthly Mingle, the theme of which is Kid’s Lunches. It is being hosted by Srivalli of Cooking 4 All Seasons

Thanks to everyone for all of the supportive comments to my last entry. It was really nice knowing that you guys were all so confident in me.

Greek-Style Whole Wheat Pizza
Serves 4, adapted from Eating Well

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 package yeast
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp sugar
3/4 cup lukewarm/hot water
1 tbsp olive oil
6 oz baby spinach
tomato sauce
1 cup reduced fat feta
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 can black olives, sliced

Combine the whole wheat flour, regular flour, yeast, salt and sugar. Combine the water and oil and gradually pour into the dry liquids. Mix together to form a dough and knead for 8-10 minutes. Place into a bowl, cover with a cloth and let rise until doubled in size (about an hour).

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Preheat the oven to the highest setting (500). Roll out the dough onto a pizza pan. My dad bought some “white” pizza dough from a local pizzeria for the non-whole wheat eaters and this is him tossing it. My dough was too small for him to toss. His dad’s family used to own a pizza shop, so he’s got some insider skillz.
These are my lovely doughs ready to be made into pizza. I had made four but one didn’t rise for some reason. I blame the yeast.

Place all of the toppings on the pizza, first spinach, then sauce, then cheese and olives and black pepper. Place in the oven and cook until the bottom of the pizza is brown.

Red Velvet Cake
Serves 12, adapted from Eating Well

3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup and 2 tbsp sugar
6 tbsp light butter
2 eggs, separated
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup reduced fat buttermilk
12 oz neufchatel
3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
red food dye
Preheat the oven to 375. Coat two 9-inch cake pans with cooking spray.
Whisk the flours, baking powder, cocoa, and salt together in a bowl.
Beat sugar and butter together until crumbly. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time, then the vanilla and food coloring until smooth.
Beat in half the buttermilk on low, then half the flour. Add the rest of the buttermilk and the rest of the flour, mixing until just incorporated.
Clean and dry the beaters. Beat the egg whites in a separate bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold into the batter with a rubber spatula. Divide the dough between the two cake pans. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Lick the bowl and the beaters and the spatula.
When the cake is done, let cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack and let cool for an hour.
To ice the cake, use a mixer to combine the confectioner’s sugar, vanilla, and neufchatel. Spread onto the one of the cakes. Place the second cake on top of the first. Ice the outside of the cake. Again, lick the bowl and the spatula. Place in the fridge until ready to eat.

You are reading this post on Eats Well With Others at Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to the author and or owner of Eats Well With Others. All rights reserved by Joanne Bruno.
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10 Responses to Endings and Beginnings

  1. ttfn300 says:

    glad things went well in nyc! bummer i didn’t know you were back i would’ve gone on that run with you 🙂 hopefully i’ll get out there in 30min!

  2. Natashya says:

    I love Greek Pizza! Looks awesome!

  3. Pam says:

    Glad you’re back! That pizza looks awesome!

  4. Reeni? says:

    It’s good to hear everything went so well. Your Greek Pizza looks outstanding! And so does your cake, I love cream cheese icing, too. And use every excuse to make it!

  5. burpandslurp says:

    wow! I am SO happy to see that you faced up to your challenges and WON! and btw…I already posted your comment up here:
    heh heh…Sorry, I just couldn’t wait, please don’t kill me (>.<)
    but, a quite a few number of people said reading your response really helped…so I hope you’re proud of yourself, girl!

  6. Kristin says:

    Hi, thanks for stopping by my blog. I like your take on the recipes-Rachael’s always need to be “heath-ified”!

  7. jesse says:

    Glad that things went so well!! The food looks soooo good! Those bowlfuls of pizza dough… yum!!!

  8. Joanne says:

    ttfn – We need to make some definite plans otherwise we will just keep missing each other!

    Natashya – Thanks a bunch! I loved all the colors.

    Pam – Thanks! Now if only I could get that crust thicker…

    Reeni – I first became addicted because of this cupcake place near school…and now I have withdrawal pangs every few months. It’s a problem.

    burpandslurp – I’m glad you posted it! I wouldn’t publicly comment anything I didn’t want the world to see. It’s nice to hear that maybe I’m helping some people get through what is an impossibly tough time.

    Kristin – Thanks for returning the favor! I love Rach, but most dishes don’t need 1/2 cup olive oil…even if it is good fat.

    jesse – I know, I could have eaten the dough straight but my parents were watching. I DID get to lick the bowls for the cake all by myself. Thanks for stopping by.

  9. Srivalli says:

    Thats a lovely pizza…can have it anytime of the day I guess…

  10. Joanne says:

    Srivalli – Pizza is definitely an anytime thing for me..especially homemade pizza.

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