Monday, August 30, 2010
Homemade soft pretzels & cinnamon-apple breakfast pizza
I came up with the idea for breakfast pizza when I was standing in front of my open fridge, a perplexed look on my face, wondering what to do with the pathetic contents of the shelves (which happened to include a few apples and some whole wheat flatbread). I am constantly trying to think up inventive breakfasts that the girls will actually eat, especially now that Sydney has started preschool and can't snack all morning long like she sometimes does at home.
To make the "pizza," I cored, peeled and sliced the apples, then cooked them in a saute pan over low heat, using Earth's Balance Buttery Spread (non-dairy butter alternative). I added a little brown sugar and some cinnamon. Then, when the apples were soft, I threw in some quick-cooking oats and water (I based the measurements on the oat package). Then I cooked the apples and oats for about 5 more minutes, or until the oats were soft.
I spread the apple/oat concoction onto some flatbread, which had been lightly brushed with the Earth's Best Buttery Spread. Then I stuck it into the oven at 350 until the flatbread was crisp.
Verdict: My girls ate it all up and declared it "yummy." Personally, I thought the flatbread was a little dry. If I did it over again, I would probably use actual whole wheat pizza dough instead of the flatbread.
Now onto the soft pretzels. I can't take credit for these - I used Alton Brown's recipe, simply because it was the first one that popped up when I googled "homemade soft pretzels." I don't know why I felt inspired to make soft pretzels. I guess I was thinking it would be a fun "mommy and me" cooking activity with the girls. But, as those things usually go, I basically did everything myself while yelling at the girls not to get raw dough stuck in the carpet.
I followed Alton's recipe exactly, and the pretzels turned out pretty well. They weren't quite as chewy as I like, but I am convinced that has to do with the tap water in Arizona rather than my baking skills. Seriously - I saw a show on the Food Network that explained the reason NY bagels and pizza are so good is because the New York tap water gives the bread that chewy-yet-crisp texture. So that's my excuse from now on when I fail to make amazing bread products.
If I make soft pretzels again, I may try a whole wheat version to make it a little healthier. Or I could really get creative and combine my two endeavors to create apple cinnamon whole wheat breakfast pretzels!