apple pizza with avocado and pulled pork

I know it might sound really weird but I have to say this is an amazing marriage of flavours. I  am on a pizza binge as of late–because it is just so easy to pull together and I am trying to use up what I have purchased previously instead of buying stuff every night. This just happened to be what was hanging around my kitchen.

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  1. I  had a bag of dough left over from yesterday that I let rest on the counter to warm up.
  2. there was a HUGE avocado that I had picked up on the weekend and it was finally ready to use along with fresh cilantro that was on its last legs.
  3.  pork loin was thawing the fridge –still a bit frosty
  4. a couple of apples/pears were lying around just begging to be eaten
  5. My cheese choices included some old cheese strings, some paneer, and a small block of aged white cheddar. I opted for the cheddar.
  • First I slathered the skinny lean pork loin with EVOO, salt, pepper and grainy mustard – then roasted @ 450 degree F oven for 20 min…. end then I turned the  oven down to 300, placing foil around it  in order to keep it from drying. I added in some mango juice that was leftover in the fridge as well just to add a bit of flavour and moisture (but you can use apple juice, OJ or even just a bit of water).

When I was ready to do the pizza, I pulled out the heated stone ( i just keep it in the oven with the roasting pork) and placed the thin rolled out dough on it. At this point you should remove the PORK and let it rest and turn the oven to 400 Degrees again.

  • Back to the Pizza Dough: spread some EVOO , salt and pepper, thin layer of cheese, and thinly sliced apples THEN pop into oven again (on the bottom of the oven floor if you have a peel and stone)
  • Set timer for approx 10 min. Remove when crisp on bottom. You can broil the top a for a couple of minutes if the apples need browning up.

Remove from oven.

  • Separate the pork with 2 forks and add on top of apple pizza
  • Top with homemade Guacamole (fresh avocado, cilantro, finely chopped onion, lime zest and juice and salt and pepper to taste) or however you like your Guac.
  • Walnuts would also be a great addition to the pizza and add some extra texture and interest.

I dare you to try it!

 

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school dazed

This is DAY 2 of Culinary School . Last fall I applied to the Integrated Learning Program: Culinary Management H116 at George Brown College. Conveniently 10 minutes from my house in downtown Toronto, and ironically next door to my former long time employer’s (Simon and Schuster) newest office digs. I must confess that I am carefully containing my excitement. I’m not really sure where this all leads me but it is the perfect time to stretch myself and I am trying to let the world unfold as it should.  

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I’ve been purchasing and organizing all my equipment for class and I just picked up the most beautiful Japanese knife this afternoon. I am practically overflowing with giddiness. I’m also scrounging around the kitchen for anything that I can pack up so I don’t overflow with duplicates in my already overstuffed house… but happily there are still some mandatory indulgences that I can add to my stockpile. Yesterday was Kitchen Management class and Hospitality Math. Today was English class and I got to hand in my first essay on HOW I AM TOTALLY UN-COOL. Each class is at least 3 hours long and it’s been fun to meet my new class mates and get the scoop on everyone’s raison d’etre. So far every instructor has been exceptionally pleasant and impressive. This is a 2 year diploma and with around 30 to 60 (?-bad with estimating numbers in crowds) people each class with a fairly diverse age range–although I think I may be the 2nd oldest. One dude talked about cooking in the 70’s. I guess technically I ( and Juli) did a stint with crazy Mrs Dean in the Kootenay‘s in 1977, but that’s a whole other story.

Tomorrow will be my first time in the baking kitchen lab and I am definitely psyched!! I hope we make something other than cookies. I’ve been living on a steady diet of them for 2 days. BTW- I will be avoiding full body shots of my chef outfit until the time is right. Tomorrow is my first day wearing this charming outfit. For now, you’ll just have to imagine it.

Turning over a new leaf I plan to cook at home as much as possible. I did not plan well but luckily I had roasted cauliflower , onions and tomatoes on the weekend.

easy dinner with leftovers in fridge- roasted cauliflower soup
easy dinner with leftovers in fridge- roasted cauliflower soup

5 minute ROASTED CAULIFLOWER SOUP

  • Throw a bunch of cauliflower and onions into a blender with some cold chicken stock (measure carefully hah!)
  • Season with salt, lemon zest, horseradish and rooster sauce to taste
  • Blend till smooth

Heat on stove and then serve with:

  • a spoon of thick yogurt
  • roasted tomatoes /lemon squeeze /capers  and FRESH CILANTRO!

Of course season to your liking– if you prefer to mix it up a bit….

Cauliflower is pretty accommodating. The rich colour is really just a result of the roasting and a wee squirt of Hot Sauce.