Hi loves!!! It’s been a little while – we have much to discuss!
First, let me catch you up on the life stuff.
I am absolutely loving life as a beer rep. In addition to meeting lots of new, awesome people, I’m the first to know about and try new beers plus every hour/day/week is completely unique which suits my ADD tendencies just right.
I have to say it is a bit tougher these days when I am living beer all day to come home and write more about beer. But, I love it! So I’m just going to make it work! In fact, I’m working on a post about my lessons learned in these first six months since taking the leap. I think you’ll find it eye opening to what the beer biz is really like. Back in June I really thought I knew a lot and boy was I wrong.
Second, I’m working on the newest of my monthly series about beer pairings. Per your recommendation, this month we’ll be picking the perfect pairing for popular snack foods. As always, I’d love your input! So far, I’m thinking: Chips and salsa, Cheez-its (my fave!) and two others. Comment below on what other two snack foods I should include!
Third, and most importantly, pizza.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Pizza is one of those perfect foods that I really can’t get enough of. Personally I’m a medium/thin crust kind of gal with loads of cheese and the perfect, crispy texture. It’s even better if there is a sweet and savory combo like buffalo chicken and pineapple or remember that Caramelized Apple, Bacon and Gruyere pizza I made that one time? Droooool.
One of my newly found discoveries since my sourdough bread obsession began is the ease of turning the exact dough into pizza. But before I get ahead of myself, let’s talk sauce.
Despite my pizza obsession, I am not a big pizza sauce person. The hubs though, a major sauce guy. Much to his dismay, anytime we’ve made pizza in the past year, I have insisted on a light brushing of olive oil and perhaps a dash of spices and garlic as the “sauce.” After some gentle pushback a couple months ago, I caved. But, I decided if I was going to go the traditional red sauce pizza route, I had to do it my own way. Since the sauce had to be light-handed, it also had to be packed with flavor.
That’s how I discovered my favorite combination of herbs, garlic and spice. This sauce couldn’t be easier and can be used for more than pizza. It’s perfect for a cheesy bread dip, mozzarella sticks, and leftovers can be thinned down with a bit of wine and tossed with your favorite pasta!
Spicy Garlic and Herb Pizza Sauce
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp chili flakes (1/4 tsp if you want it less spicy)
- 1/2 tsp freshly chopped thyme leaves (about four large stems)
- 1 dry bay leaf
- 1 large garlic clove, chopped very fine or preferably microplaned
- 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
In your medium sized sauce pan of choice, add the olive oil to the pan on medium heat. I love my mini Le Creuset braiser instead of a sauce pan, but work with what you got! When the oil is hot, but not smoking, add the oregano, chili flakes, thyme and bay leaf. Stir frequently for a minute or two to infuse the oil and herbs, then add the garlic, continuing to stir for another minute. Make sure the garlic doesn’t burn. Add the crushed tomatoes and stir well to combine with the spicy, garlicky herb oil. Let come up to a gentle simmer for 25-30 minutes or until thickened. Taste and add salt/pepper as preferred.
When you see the finished product of this pizza you are going to diiiiiie. Can’t wait to share the rest , but you’ll just have to wait!