Thursday, May 19, 2016

Delicious "Cheesy" Veggie Pizza!






Today was going to be a cheat day. After 12 days of no meat, no dairy, no eggs, and very little oil, we deserved it, right? I've been planning it since yesterday. I had the bacon in the freezer, and eggs and potatoes in the fridge. Fried eggs and potatoes with perfectly cooked bacon...I couldn't wait! Maybe a pan-seared Salmon fillet, or grilled tri-tip for dinner? The possibilities were endless.

But then I started thinking about how GOOD I feel on this diet. And I thought about the 4 lbs I've lost already, in 12 days. One day of cheating may not make that much of a difference, but what if it does? What if I gain a pound back? What if I feel sluggish after I eat? 

All of a sudden, those "cheat" foods didn't sound so appealing, so I did cheat day in my own way, with a delicious pizza that included some Trader Joe's "Sausageless-Italian Sausage" and Trader Joe's "Almond Mozzarella-style Cheese." So, I was able to keep with the "no meat, no dairy" thing and still eat something satisfying, albeit with a few extra fat grams.

I've seen mixed reviews, but I actually enjoyed the Trader Joe's "sausage" and "cheese", and it made this meal very delicious. So much so, that I still felt like I was cheating... :)

Here's the recipe:

Ingredients

1 Three Baker's gluten free Pizza Crust (thawed)
4 Tbsp Trader Joe's Fat Free Pizza Sauce
1 link Trader Joe's "Sausageless Italian Sausage, sliced into coins
1 C Asparagus tips
1 C chopped Yellow, Orange, or Red Bell Pepper
1/2 C Red Onion, very thinly sliced
Drizzle of Balsamic Vinegar 
1/4 C Trader Joe's Almond "Mozzarella-Style Cheese"

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Start about 4 cups of water on high heat to a boil.
Saute the "Sausage" in a dry skillet until brown on one side, then turn and brown the other side, set aside.

Blanch the asparagus and bell pepper for one minute in the boiling water, remove with a slotted spoon into a bowl with the red onion, and toss with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

 Spread the pizza sauce on the pizza crust evenly, almost to the outside edges. Distribute the asparagus, bell pepper, and onion over the pizza.  Top with the browned sausage and sprinkle with the "cheese."

Bake right on the oven rack for a crisp crust for about 12 minutes. You can put it on a cookie sheet for a chewier crust.

Remove from the oven when the cheese just starts to brown, then slice and serve!



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