Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Combine spinach salad, perogy pizza in tasty meal

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Janice (Rick) Clouston had requested the recipe for a warm bacon dressing that was in the paper a number of years ago. Shortly afterwards Colleen Gallagher e-mailed to see if I had the recipe for the spinach salad with warm dressing that was served at Mr. Greenjeans, which used to be downtown. She says it is the best she has ever tasted. Both requests are answered today. Thanks to Mary Lou Hodge, who sent in the recipe reprinted today, and also to Sandy Dimma, Louise Balaban and Lorrie Berard.

Irene Ling and Lumena Cabral-Costa had both requested a recipe like Boston Pizza's spicy perogy pizza. Thanks go out to Christi Schick, a graphic designer at the Free Press, who shares the recipe today that she and her kids, Luke and Stephanie, came up with. The pizza dough recipe is courtesy of Linda Snider of Glenboro.

New requests: Barb Leighton asks for a recipe for lemon roasted potatoes with a thick cream sauce on top, like those served at The Feast. Gail Friesen would like to make the tomato soup that her husband used to enjoy at Eaton's cafeteria. He thinks it may have included cheese. Last, Carol Leite asks if anyone has a recipe for cinnamon buns like the ones at Stella's.

If you can help with a recipe request, have your own request, or a favourite recipe you'd like to share, send an e-mail to recipeswap@freepress.mb.ca, fax it to 697-7412, or write to Recipe Swap, c/o Darlene Henderson, Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6. Include your first and last name, address and telephone number. Please note that your recipe may not appear right away due to space limitations.

Like Mr. Greenjeans spinach salad with warm dressing

2 litres (8 cups) fresh spinach

8 slices cooked bacon

500 ml (2 cups) sliced mushrooms

3 green onions, chopped

250 ml (1 cup) shredded mozzarella cheese

4 hard-boiled eggs

Dressing:

1 large onion, diced

30 ml (2 tbsp) bacon fat

30 ml (2 tbsp) water

45 ml (3 tbsp) apple cider vinegar

80 ml (1/3 cup) sugar

250 ml (1 cup) mayonnaise

Cook bacon until crispy. Retain 30 ml (2 tbsp) bacon fat.

Dressing: Sauté diced onion in bacon fat. Add water, vinegar, sugar, mayonnaise and heat over low heat mixing until sugar is dissolved.

Salad: Place spinach, mushrooms, green onions and cheese in a bowl. Pour dressing over top and mix well. Decorate with egg and bacon.

Taste Tester Notes: This dressing is very good and with the salad is a wonderful combination of flavour. It's good with or without the hard-boiled eggs. When making the dressing, once the sugar is dissolved stir until smooth. If not using the dressing immediately, keep warm until ready to use.

Christi's spicy perogy pizza

12-inch pizza crust

3 to 4 large potatoes

Salt

Pepper

Garlic powder

Parsley flakes

Dried red chili peppers

Paprika

Tomato sauce

Mozzarella cheese, shredded

5 slices cooked, crisp bacon

1 small diced onion

Sour cream

60 ml (1/4 cup) cheddar cheese, shredded

1 or 2 green onions, chopped

Thinly slice potatoes and place, overlapping, on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, garlic powder, parsley flakes, dried red chilies and paprika. Bake for about 20-30 minutes at 350 F.

Spread a very thin layer of tomato sauce on crust and sprinkle with mozzarella (not as much sauce or cheese as on a regular pizza or it will overpower the potatoes). Place baked potato slices on top and sprinkle with broken up bacon and then onions. Spread sour cream all around the rim of the crust. Bake at 425 F for about 15 to 20 minutes. Take pizza out and sprinkle cheddar cheese in the middle and chopped green onions. Turn oven off and put pizza back in for about 5 minutes to melt the cheddar.

Taste Tester Notes: There are obviously no perogies on top of this pizza, but some of the same ingredients plus a few extra to make this is a really good combination. Use your favourite pizza crust or you can try the one that follows, which I used. (I did try this with a half white, half whole wheat flour crust, but found the whole wheat too overpowering for this particular pizza. I tried a second one with an all white flour crust and think that works best). Part of the flavour of this pizza is the kick from the spices, so sprinkle the potatoes liberally with paprika, and I used a good 15 ml (1 tbsp) of crushed red pepper. I spread a 12-inch crust with 80 ml (1/3 cup) of tomato sauce, and then spread with 175 ml (3/4 cup) of sour cream (rather than placing sour cream around the rim). I topped this with 125 ml (1/2 cup) of shredded mozzarella, then the potatoes, bacon (I used extra bacon) and onions. After baking for 15 minutes, I sprinkled 175 ml (3/4 cup) of cheddar all over the top along with extra green onions and returned to the oven to melt the cheese. You can top the whole pizza, or each piece, with a dollop of sour cream, and have extra sour cream and crushed peppers to serve on the side if desired.

Basic pizza dough

625 - 750 ml (2 1/2 to 3 cups) all-purpose flour

1 pkg quick rising yeast

3 ml (3/4 tsp) salt

250 ml (1 cup) hot tap water

30 ml (2 tbsp) olive oil

Mix 500 ml (2 cups) flour, yeast and salt in a bowl. Stir hot water and olive oil together and mix into flour mixture. Gradually stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a stiff dough. Knead on lightly floured board until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Shape dough into a ball, cover and let rise 10 minutes before using. Dough can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated up to 8 hours or frozen up to one month (thaw in the refrigerator). Bring to room temperature before using.

Taste Tester Notes: Nice, simple and quick dough. Olive oil adds so much flavour to pizza dough. This is enough dough for one thicker crust 12 or 15-inch pizza, or two 10 or 12-inch thin crust pizzas (depending on how thin or thick you like your crust). Use a greased pan, top with your favourite toppings, and bake at 425 F for 15 to 20 minutes. I used this to make today's featured pizza, and with a 12-inch pan made a thick crust with a large, puffy rim.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 23, 2008

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