Quick Fix: Pizza's easy on cook, pocketbook

McClatchy-Tribune News ServiceMay 15, 2013 

Here's a quick pizza dinner that takes less time than ordering one. Sweet onions, mozzarella cheese, bell peppers and mushrooms top a ready-made thin crust for this quick meal.

Anything goes these days with pizza, from figs to pickles. Or you can make a cheese burger pizza with ground beef, cheddar cheese and tomatoes. In Philadelphia they serve a Philly-cheese steak pizza with grilled steak, peppers, onions and provolone.

Thin crust pizza bases are now available in the market. It makes a crisp base for the pizza. Or if you have time, use a refrigerated pizza dough. Roll it out until it is thin and it will fill your kitchen with the aroma of freshly baked bread.

The order in which the ingredients are layered makes a difference in how fast the pizza cooks. I place the peppers and onions on top so that they are exposed to the heat and will cook through in just 15 minutes.

Serve an Italian-style washed, ready-to-eat salad on the side.

Wine suggestion: Pizza, naturally calls for Chianti.

This meal contains 676 calories per serving with 33 percent of calories from fat.

HELPFUL HINTS:

• Red onion can be used instead of Vidalia onions.

• Sliced baby-bello mushrooms can be found in most markets, but any type can be used.

• French bread or pita bread can be used as a pizza base.

COUNTDOWN:

• Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

• Prepare pizza.

• Bake pizza.

• Toss salad with dressing.

ONION, PEPPER AND MUSHROOM PIZZA

1 (10 or 12-inch) thin crust pizza base

Olive oil spray

1 large, ripe tomato, sliced (about 1- 1/2 cups)

1 teaspoon dried oregano

4 ounces part skim milk mozzarella cheese, sliced

2 1/2 cups sliced baby-bello mushrooms

1 bell pepper (red, yellow or green), sliced (about 1 cup)

1 cup sliced Vidalia onion or other sweet onion

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil. Place pizza base on the foil and spray with olive oil spray. Arrange sliced tomatoes on top in a single layer, overlapping as necessary. Sprinkle on oregano and top with mozzarella slices. Spread mushrooms over the cheese and bell pepper and onions on top of the mushrooms. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 15 minutes. Makes 2 servings.

Per serving: 676 calories (33 percent from fat), 24.8 g fat (8.5 g saturated, 2.6g monounsaturated), 36 mg cholesterol, 31.5 g protein, 88.9 g carbohydrates, 7.5 g fiber, 831 mg sodium.

SHOPPING LIST

Here are the ingredients you'll need for tonight's Dinner in Minutes.

To buy: 1 (10- or 12-inch) thin crust pizza base, 1 can olive oil spray, 4 ounces part-skim milk mozzarella cheese, 1 bell pepper (red, yellow or green), 1 large ripe tomato, 1 Vidalia onion and 1/2 pound sliced baby-bello mushrooms.

Staples: dried oregano

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