Diane Prather: Pizza with a top crust

First of all this week, a note about last week’s column.

I included information about two food preservation workshops Jan. 30 and Feb. 20 at the Moffat County Extension Office Kitchen. I may have accidentally included my phone number as a contact number. (I can’t believe what I do sometimes.)

So, to register or to find out more about the workshops, call the Moffat County Extension Office at 824-9180.

Now, back to regular cooking matters.

I don’t make “scratch” pizza as often as I should because it takes time to prepare the dough. So sometimes I make a pizza casserole.

This morning, while I was browsing through my casserole file, I found a recipe for “Pop Over Pizza” on a yellowed newspaper clipping (I’m not sure what newspaper).

It differs a little from the recipe I ordinarily use.

To make “Pop Over Pizza,” first preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Then find a 9-inch-by-13-inch casserole dish.

Gather up these ingredients: 1 pound ground beef, 1 large onion (chopped), 1 envelope spaghetti sauce mix, 1 (15-ounce) can tomato sauce, 1/2 cup water, 8 ounces mozzarella cheese, 2 eggs, 1 cup milk, 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, 1 cup flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese.

Brown the beef with the onion in a large skillet. Break up the beef with a spoon as the meat cooks. Spoon off the excess fat. Stir in the sauce mix, tomato sauce and water. Simmer for 10 minutes. Spoon into the ungreased casserole dish. Top with the mozzarella cheese.

In a bowl, beat the eggs, milk and oil until foamy. Beat in flour and salt until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter over the hot meat sauce. Spread the batter evenly over the meat sauce. (The batter will not be thick.) Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

Bake uncovered for about 30 minutes, or until the top is puffed and a deep golden brown. Cut into squares and serve with a lettuce salad.

A note about what I did when I mixed up this recipe: I used half ground beef and half mild ground sausage. (That’s because we like sausage pizza.)

I chose an envelope of “Thick and Zesty” spaghetti sauce mix. To the meat sauce ingredients I added a can of drained mushroom pieces and some sliced black olives. I didn’t have any pepperoni, but that could have been added, too.

In other words, you can make this pizza casserole your own by adding what you like. I did not put Parmesan cheese on top.

I liked the taste of the sauce made with the dry packet and tomato sauce. This is a good recipe. Enjoy.

If you have recipes you’d like to share, send them to me at P.O. Box 415, Craig, CO 81626. You can also call me at 824-8809.

Copyright Diane Prather, 2010.

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