Last night, I had a lovely dinner planned. It would be simple, fast, and delicious, a toned-down version of another dish I love. It’s one of those dishes that has few ingredients, but they all just blend so well together…the sum of the components is so far superior to the individual ingredients.
So what happened, you ask? Well, allow me to back up a step. I was out of town this weekend, and I didn’t restock my kitchen when I got back. I thought the food I had remaining from last week would still be fine…but it wasn’t. I came home to moldy grape tomatoes and spotted basil. ONE leaf of basil looked good yet, so I tore off that leaf and thought about what I could do with it, given what I had to work with.
I rummaged through the fridge, the pantry, and the freezer. And though my resulting dinner was hardly gourmet, it was tasty, it was fast, and the cleanup was easy (yes!).
Pesto Pita Pizza
This really isn’t a recipe, but it does serve as an example of what you can do by keeping a few basics on hand: some sort of cheese and whole wheat pitas. I happened to have some pesto, but you could just as easily use a brush of olive oil. This pizza is simply a pita, pesto, mozzarella, tomato slices, basil, salt, pepper, and a little grated parmesan on top with a drizzle of olive oil to finish. I baked it at 425F for about eight minutes. Serve this with a glass of wine (I prefer a crisp white or even a sparkling wine with pizza) and a nice salad tossed with a vinaigrette; the acidity of the wine and the vinaigrette balance the pesto and olive oil in the pizza.
Wait a second, tomato slices? You may be wondering why I couldn’t use these larger vine-ripened tomatoes in the first recipe I was hinting at. That recipe, which I promise I will make soon, uses grape or cherry tomatoes that are sautéed and used as a topping. Chunks of a larger tomato simply wouldn’t work, and I really didn’t have enough basil for the dish, either.