My Big Fat Greek Meat Lovers Pizza Pie

Greek Pizza 142I LOVE Gyro sandwiches, so this will have all the flavors, but in a pizza-form. Save the “Tzatziki” packages from the frozen Gyro sandwich kit, to use on top of the Pizza. I also save the Pita bread as well to dip with my favorite Hummus: Sabra Olive Tapenade. Opa!

INGREDIENTS:

  1. Pizza crust, recommended: Pillsbury Classic, 13.8 oz
  2. Ground Turkey Italian Sausage, recommended: Festive, 1 lb.Greek Pizza 067
  3. Pepperoni, recommended: Hillshire Farms, 7 oz.
  4. Soppressata, Hot uncured Salami, recommended: Vincenza’s, 4 oz.
  5. Gyro Sandwich, recommended: Opaa, two 7.35 oz packages
  6. Feta Cheese Crumbles, recommended: Athenos, 6 oz.
  7. Italian Five Cheese Blend with a Touch of Philadelphia, recommended: Kraft, 8 oz.
  8. Margherita Pizza Sauce, recommended: Ragú, 14 oz., reserve 2 tablespoons
  9. Tri-Color Tomato Wedges in Olive Oil & Italian Spices, recommended: Great Value, 10 oz.Greek Pizza 119
  10. Anchovies, recommended: Crown Prince, 2 oz.
  11. Kalamata Olives, Sliced, recommended: Great Value, ¼ cup
  12. Sumac, recommended: Zamouri Spices, ¼ teaspoon
  13. Oregano, recommended: Spice World, ¼ teaspoon
  14. Red Pepper Flakes, recommended: Spice World, ¼ teaspoon
  15. Granulated Garlic, recommended: HyVee, ¼ teaspoon
  16. Grated Parmesan Three Cheese Blend, recommended: Kraft, 1 teaspoon
  17. Red Onions, diced, ¼ cupGreek Pizza 065
  18. Flour, recommended: Wondra, as needed
  19. Parchment Paper Sheets, recommended: Reynolds Kitchens, 3
  20. Foil Sheets, recommended: Reynolds Wrap, 2-3

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Defrost the “frozen” Gyro Sandwich, and separate the Gyro slices from the Pita Bread, the day ahead or at least 30 minutes before cook time. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Greek Pizza 085Fry the Anchovies in a skillet to reduce the bones, but save as much of the Anchovy Oil as possible.
  3. Ground the Turkey Italian Sausage in the same skillet, until done. Drain and combine with the diced Red Onions, 2 tablespoons of the Pizza sauce and the diced Kalamata Olives.
  4. Prepare the Pizza crust by using two sheets of Parchment paper, flour as needed to keep it from sticking and use a rolling pin to get to the desired size for your cooking pan/sheet. For easy clean up, I line my pan with Parchment Sheets. Poke holes in the middle of the crust, using a fork, excluding the edges.Greek Pizza 093
  5. Pre-bake crust for 7 to 10 minutes and remove.
  6. Apply half of the Pizza Sauce and all of the Soppressata Salami. This is a good time for Mise en Place, a French culinary phrase which means “putting in place” or “everything in place. The Pepperoni package was already divided in half. I divided the Turkey Italian Sausage, in half, in the skillet.
  7. Add half the Turkey Italian Sausage and top with half of the Five Cheese Blend.
  8. Add half of the Pepperoni and half of the Feta Sauce.
  9. Greek Pizza 098Add the remaining Turkey Italian Sausage, Feta cheese and the remaining Pepperoni. Add the rest of the Pizza Sauce, the drained Tomato Wedges, more Kalamata Olives, Sumac, Granulated Garlic, Red Pepper Flakes, Grated Parmesan Cheese Blend and Oregano.
  10. Bake for 20 minutes and then remove from the oven.
  11. While it is baking, fry the Gyro slices in the same skillet on one side only. It fries like bacon, but don’t overcook it, as it will have additional cook time in the oven.
  12. Layer the Gyro slices and “smush” it down, if needed.
  13. Greek Pizza 105Add the remaining Five Cheese, topped with Oregano and Parmesan Cheese and bake an additional 9 to 10 minutes until the cheese melts.
  14. Let it rest for about 10 to 15 minutes before cutting. AKA: The longest 10 minutes in my life! I only had a banana and some chips so far.

Don’t get me wrong, I love ordering a Meat Lover’s Pizza from Pizza Hut, with marinara sauce, pepperoni, all-natural Italian sausage, slow-roasted ham, hardwood smoked bacon, seasoned pork and beef. Hopefully my take on a Puttanesca pizza will Greek-a-fy it!Greek Pizza 106

Laundry Day Update:

I got my new Washer & Dryer installed today. I got the Smart Wi-Fi models and connected them to my Smart Phone. Even though they are “shiny and new” I miss my old-ass ancient set already. This washer and dryer is so complicated, I hope I can figure out how to use when I wash a load tomorrow. Wish me luck!

It took me 10 minutes to figure out how to use it. And I still have Greek Pizza 115not figured out how to have it alert my phone. I can’t believe a wash load only took 20 minutes, compared to the older washer taking over 60 minutes.

My cat, Missouri Sunshine, loves the new washer and dryer! At first she was mesmerized, then afraid and then could not stop watching it spin. This is a new form of TV entertainment for cats.

Food & Toilet Paper Shortage Update:

Greek Pizza 156It’s funny how the TV Show: The Last Man on Earth, predicted COVID. Down to being set in the exact same year: 2020. It is not so funny having a food and toilet paper shortage. FOX should bring the show back, maybe we can find out how to resolve this?

I was so stressed out shopping on line to search for toilet paper. Forget about the usual suspects: Walmart, HyVee, Whole Foods and Amazon. I had to use Aldi’s instead. They had most of my stuff, but ran out of eggs, milk, liquid soap and toilet paper.

Greek Pizza 128My cat needs her milk and was almost out. So I found Dry Milk for Kittens at Amazon. Just mixed it with water and she is good to go.

I gave up on my usual suspects, as it seemed like toilet paper was nowhere to be found. So I checked at Lowes and Home Depot.

As soon as it put it in my basket, I got a notification that it was out of stock.

Greek Pizza 135I’m not playing the toilet paper game, so I ended up getting the giant roll at Home Depot. It will be ugly as hell, but at least I have TP for my bung hole. Party on Beavis and Butthead. Those dopes knew how important TP truly is.

 

 

 

Greek Pizza 062

 

THE VAMPIRE DANCER COOKBOOK IS COMING!

Check out the sample and get your copy here:  Audible.com The Vampire Dancer Saga Part 4 Audiobook

The Vampire Dancer Saga Parts 1, 2, 3 and 4 are all Audiobooks now available at  Audible.com and iTunes (click the word Audible or iTunes to open link to store).

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GARLICKY GREEK LEMON CHICKEN

Greek Chicken Dinner 029The Umami Flavor Bomb!

On cooking show competitions it is always a compliment to hear that your food has Umami. You, know, that bold flavor bomb that comes from strong ingredients like garlic, bacon, onion, cheese, pepper, anchovies or lemon/lime, AKA the 7 wonders of the food world. u·ma·mi /o͞oˈmämē/noun: Umami

  • a category of taste in food (besides sweet, sour, salt, and bitter), corresponding to the flavor of glutamates, especially monosodium glutamate.

I love food with Middle Eastern flavors such Sumac, Feta and Greek Chicken Dinner 026Greek Yogurt. I used to Belly Dance at the Kabob House. One of my favorite dishes was their Lamb Kabob and Rice, seasoned with Sumac. So here is my take on a baked chicken, marinated with Sumac and Greek Yogurt. Opa!

GREEK CHICKEN INGREDIENTS:

1. Chicken fresh bone-in, such as thighs or breasts, 2-3 ½ lb. (or use Frozen Chicken that you can defrost over 3 days)

2. Stubb’s Chicken Marinade Mix Citrus & Onion, 1 oz

3. Sumac, recommended Zamouri Spices, 2-3 tablespoons

4. Greek Yogurt Traditional Plain, recommended The Greek Gods, 8-16 oz.Samsung 309

5. Anchovies, recommended Crown Prince, 2 oz.

6. Feta cheese chunk, recommended President, 4 oz.

7. Feta cheese crumbles, recommended President, 4 oz. for garnish

8. Olive Medley (Kalamata pitted, whole and sliced, Green Salad sliced, Black Olives sliced) ¾ cup

9. Capers non-pareil, recommended Crosse & Blackwell, ¼ cup

10. Lemons, 2 (slice one and dice the other into 4 chunks)

11. Tomato, dice into 4 chunksGreek Chicken Dinner 014

12. Garlic, 5 cloves

13. Vinegar (your favorite, Red Wine, Apple Cider, Balsamic, etc.)

14. Rosemary Leaf, ½ teaspoon, divided

15. Tarragon Leaf, ½ teaspoon, divided

16. Naan Bread, 1 per meal

17. Truffle Oil, 1 teaspoon or less for Naan

GREEK CHICKEN INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Garlic Greek Chicken 015Fresh Chicken (add to Ziplock bag and cover with Sumac and Chicken Marinade). I was not baking my chicken that day, so I froze it.

2. For fresh chicken, add the Yogurt and marinade for ½ hour or longer

3. For frozen chicken, add the Yogurt to the bag and thaw in refrigerator for 3 days

4. Preheat oven to 325 when ready to cook

5. Season lemon and tomatoes with ¼ of Rosemary and Tarragon Leaf

6. Add chicken to baking dish and cover with Anchovy oil

7. Put the Anchovies beneath the chicken pieces and top the Anchovies with GarlicGreek Chicken 003

8. Add the Olive Medley with Capers between pieces and cover with Feta Cheese Chunk slices

9. Cover chicken with Lemon slices

10. Pour vinegar over the chicken

11. Cover with ¼ of Rosemary and Tarragon Leaf

12. Cover with foil

13. Bake at 325 for 1 hourGreek Chicken 006

14. Remove foil and bake at 350 for 30 minutes

15. Add Truffle Oil to lemon and tomato chunks

16. Grill Lemon and tomato chunks

17. Remove and grill Naan bread for 2 minutes per side to get grill marks

SAFFRON RICE INGREDIENTS:

  1. Yellow Saffron Rice, recommended Mahatma, 5 oz.
  2. Turkey Broth and/or water 1 ½ to 2 cups
  3. Chicken Bouillon Cubes, 2Greek Chicken Dinner 001
  4. Feta cheese crumbles, recommended President, 4 oz. for garnish
  5. Greek Yogurt Traditional Plain, recommended The Greek Gods, 2 tablespoons
  6. Saffron, recommended Sun Brand, 5 to 10 strands
  7. Truffle Oil, 1 teaspoon
  8. Truffle Zest, ¼ teaspoon
  9. Butter, 2 pats, separated
  10. Rosemary Leaf, ½ teaspoon
  11. Tarragon Leaf, ½ teaspoon

SAFFRON RICE INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Add Truffle Oil, Truffle Zest, 1 Butter pat, Rosemary and Tarragon and heat for 2 minutes in your sauce pan
  2. Prepare according to Rice package directions.
  3. Add Bouillon Cubes and Broth/Water to pan and bring to a boilGarlic Greek Chicken 011
  4. Add rice, cover pan, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes
  5. Stir in Yogurt, Feta Cheese crumbles and 1 Butter pat

I am out of Tzatziki sauce at the moment. However, you can whip one up using Yogurt, Lemon juice (from the grilled lemons), Garlic and Dill. Perhaps, I will make that tomorrow, using my mini Chop Blender.

The baked Feta Cheese chunk slices mimic Greek Flaming Cheese: Saganaki! Even though it was baked, it did become crisp and benefit from the Olive Tapenade, Balsamic Vinegar and Anchovy Umami. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saganaki

  • In Greek cuisine, Saganaki (Greek σαγανάκι) is any one of a variety of dishes prepared in a small frying pan, the best-known being an appetizer of fried cheese. Garlic Greek Chicken 004
  • The cheese used in cheese saganaki is usually graviera, kefalograviera, halloumi, kasseri, kefalotyri, or sheep’s milk feta cheese. Regional variations include the use of formaela cheese in Arachova, halloumi in Cyprus, and vlahotiri in Metsovo. The cheese is melted in a small frying pan until it is bubbling and generally served with lemon juice and pepper. It is eaten with bread.
  • Other dishes cooked in a saganaki pan include shrimp saganaki (Greek: γαρίδες σαγανάκι, garídes saganáki), and mussels saganaki (Greek: μύδια σαγανάκι, mýdia saganáki), which are typically feta-based and include a spicy tomato sauce.
  • In many United States and Canadian restaurants, after being fried, the saganaki cheese is flambéed at the table (sometimes with a shout of “opa![2]), and the flames then usually extinguished with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. This is called “flaming saganaki” and apparently originated in 1968 atGarlic Greek Chicken 005 The Parthenon restaurant in Chicago‘s Greektown,[2][3][4][5] based on the suggestion of a customer to owner Chris Liakouras.[6].

That was the best and most flavorful rice I have ever made in my lifetime. It might be just as good as the Kabob House, but it will be just the Umami I need for dinner! Opa!

Check out the sample and get your copy here:  Audible.com The Vampire Dancer Saga Part 4 Audiobook

The Vampire Dancer Saga Parts 1, 2, 3 and 4 are all Audiobooks now available at  Audible.com and iTunes (click the word Audible or iTunes to open link to store).Greek Chicken Dinner 025

 

 

 

 

 

 

PAPERBACK BOOKS BY SHALIMAR ALI:

SHALIMAR ALI BOOKS AT AMAZON

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The Vampire Dancer Saga Part 4 @ Amazon Kindle (June 13, 2016)

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The Vampire Dancer Saga Part 3 by Shalimar Ali (Apr 13, 2014)

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The Vampire Dancer Saga Part 2 by Shalimar Ali (Dec 11, 2012)

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The Vampire Dancer Saga by Shalimar Ali, Shalimarali and N/A (Jul 25, 2012)

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Learn to Belly Dance Textbook & Certification Program: Dance Lessons & Choreographies For Students, Troupes, Performers… by Shalimar Ali (Aug 17, 2011)

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