When Deputy Editor of Shanghai Family Magazine, Jessica told me the theme for May’s issue, I was super excited to come up with the perfect recipe.
The Teen Issue.
This meant I would need to come up with a recipe that even the pickiest teenagers would love. It needs to be:
- Easy for mom or dad to make
- Can make a lot so they can be frozen and reheated by their teenagers.
- Super delicious
The delicious part was going to be easy. Not worried.
That left me with 1 and 2 which really go hand in hand. I thought back to being a teenager, coming home from a long day at schools and standing in front of the refrigerator/freezer searching for a quick and easy snack.
Frozen Pizza. Everyone loves pizza. Now, I needed to come up with a recipe that incorporates pizza flavors in an easy to eat and make way.
I don’t know about your house, but my teen life was full of frozen Pizza Pockets and Tostino Pizza Bites. Two convenient snacks that every teenager in the USA loves, but you can’t get here in Shanghai.
That’s the plan! At first I thought I would be revolutionary and do Pizza Waffles, but I ran into some major problems…
- I didn’t have a Belgian Waffle Maker, and to be honest, if I don’t have one then I can guarantee you not very many expats will have one either. I do have a waffle maker but it only makes thin waffles and to stuff the waffles with pizza sauce and cheese, you’ll definitely need a thick Belgian-style griddle.
- And it was so freaking messy. And I have a full time maid who cleans the tornado I leave behind every day. But this was just too much.
- Reheated waffles aren’t the tastiest. People would have to make the waffles and then reheat them later. Mhhh… The best part of waffles is eating them straight off the griddle.
So Pizza Waffles are out.
But I’m resilient. I’ll come up with something else.
Pizza Pockets! That’s it! Who can resist the delicious ingredients of pizza stuffed in a puff pastry shell! With a couple of ingredients from Fields and less than an hour you can whip up dozens of pizza pockets and freeze them for your teenager to reheat and enjoy.
Coming up with the recipe ideas for the Food File every month isn’t always easy, but at least it’s delicious!
You'll never hear "There's nothing to eat in this house!" again if you stock up on these yummy Pizza Pockets!
- 1 tablespoon (15ml) Olive Oil
- 1/2 small Onion, grated
- 1/2 teaspoon Oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon Basil
- 1/8 teaspoon Paprika
- 1/8 teaspoon Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
- 1 Garlic, grated
- 2 teaspoons Sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 3 ounces (100g) Butter
- 1 tablespoon Garlic Powder
- 1/2 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
- Sliced Black Olives, Mushrooms, Jalapeños, Onions, Pineapples, Pepperoni...
- Over medium heat in a medium sized pot, heat olive oil, onions, paprika, black pepper, oregano and basil for 3-4 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute or until fragrant.
- Add sugar, salt and tomatoes. Simmer, stirring occasionally for 15-20 minutes or until the sauce reduces and thickens.
- Set aside to cool.
- While the sauce is cooling, start the puff pastry. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the puff pastry dough so that it's thin enough to cut out 9-12 squares. With a pastry brush, dust off the excess flour.
- Cut the dough into 9-12 even squares depending on what size you want.
- You are going to fold the dough in half so as you add the sauce and toppings, remember to only use half of the square.
- Place a 1-2 tablespoons of tomato sauce in the middle, leaving a 1/2" allowance on all sides. Top with mozzarella and your toppings.
- Brush the edges of the dough with water.
- Fold over the half of the square that you didn't place the toppings on and press down. Use a fork to seal in the edges and create a pretty edge.
- Place on a parchment lined baking sheet 2" apart and bake for 15 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.
- Melt the butter and stir in the garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Allow the butter to cool slightly.
- As soon as you remove them from the oven, brush the Pizza Pockets with the garlic-butter mixture.
- Cool for 2-3 minutes before biting into them!
- Serve with extra pizza sauce for dipping.
You could also use shredded mozzarella cheese if you prefer. If you are making these for teenagers, make them a little larger and cut the dough into 9 squares. For smaller appetites cut them into 12 squares. Warning! The insides of the Pizza Pockets will be very hot so do not bite right into them.