Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Homemade Chicken Pesto Pizza

Our garden has taken a turn for the worse, I'm afraid.  Back in August it just got so hot and we were surprised with a few days of rain which only made the weeds grow even faster.  At first I attacked them with great diligence, but then slowly they outnumbered my determination.  But you know what I also found?  Even though the garden looks worse and certainly isn't magazine-picture ready, it's still producing.  Still thriving in the midst of all those weeds.  Perhaps we too, can thrive in the midst of life when it feels choked with weeds?  That'll preach. 
Let's preach ourselves right on into this homemade chicken pesto pizza.  Seriously delicious.  Homemade crust, basil pesto made with ingredients from our herb garden, mozzarella cheese, and chicken pulled from a whole chicken in the crockpot.  My girls love this pizza and will even gobble it up in school lunch the next day! 


Let's start with the chicken.  I always buy a whole chicken in the meat section and then put it in the crockpot on low for a whole day.  You could easily add an onion or something to flavor the chicken to the pot, but I always keep it simple and just add water (maybe around 6 cups) and italian seasoning.  Once the chicken is cooked, I pull the meat off the bone and use some/freeze some.  This can be used for pizza, enchiladas, taquitos, soup, etc.  

To make the basil pesto, I use this recipe and leave the pine nuts out (only because I'm cheap). I make the exact amount they say and use half for each pizza, instead of a red sauce.
For the crust, I use this recipe, which makes two crusts.  I always bake both pizzas because this will feed our whole family for at least another meal the next day.  It works great for lunches!

Add a bag of mozzarella cheese and you're on your way to a great, easy pizza! 

I usually start the crust late afternoon because it needs about an hour to rise.  I've tried a lot of homemade crust recipes and this is by far the best.  The crust is perfectly in the middle, not too thick, not too thin.  After rolling out my crust, I place it on a cookie sheet and then add a generous amount of pesto.  Next, add chicken and top it off with cheese.  Bake according to the crust directions and you're done!  *You will want to place your pizzas on something with a rim or edge because of the olive oil in the pesto.  I didn't do this the first time and used a pizza stone, which caused the olive oil to seep into the oven and make a lot of smoke.*

Now take this pizza out to the porch for a picnic…..and enjoy all that autumn has to offer. 

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