As part of my efforts to make H’s school lunches more interesting (and make the cafeteria food less appealing), I have been on the lookout for fun, creative things to pack. Sometimes that means making it for dinner the night before, with enough left over to pack in the Laptop Lunchbox. Last week, H was mildly chagrined that he did not get to have cafeteria pizza for lunch, and reported that he’d cajoled his new friend Jeffrey into sharing a pepperoni with him.
Enter the pizza cup. I had seen a recipe for them in Everyday Food, and again a few days later on The Kitchn. I decided to follow their lead (if not their recipes, except for cook times) and give pizza cups a whack.
I started with Pioneer Woman’s pizza crust recipe, one I’ve been fussing with for a few months (I can never seem to get it thin enough when making regular pizza; turns out rolling it out rather than pressing it with your fingers is the key). After I rolled out the crust, I cut it into various shapes and placed the dough into a muffin tin:
For the sauce, I took a 28-ounce can of peeled whole tomatoes, a small can of tomato paste, and dumped them into a pot with a generous shake of Ana’s Herbs and about a quarter-cup of water. I let that simmer for a while (I don’t know how long because I was actually working! on my dissertation! multitasking win!), then turned off the heat for an hour or so while I did other things. I put the whole shebang in the blender and hit “puree” (causing the children to run into the kitchen and inquire excitedly as to what kind of smoothie I was making). Then I spooned the sauce into the cups:
On top of the sauce, I put mozzarella. The bottom row is just cheese, the middle two rows have pepperoni and black olive, and the top row has broccoli (not recommended):
Bake at 450 for 12 minutes and let cool for a few minutes. Serve with a green salad or some steamed broccoli.
These were pretty tasty. I feel like I could have rolled the dough thinner because the bread-to-sauce-and-topping ratio was less than ideal. Or I could have folded over the little flaps and made little calzones (and thereby worked in more sauce/toppings). But I think they’ll be a nice, fun, filling lunch for my boy.