A few years ago, someone asked me if I had a “good recipe for mashed potatoes.” It took me a couple of tries to understand what they were even asking, because until that moment, it had never even occurred to me that someone would use a recipe to make mashed potatoes. What do you want next, a recipe for toast?? You don’t need a recipe telling you how to make mashed potatoes, you just mash the potatoes. Peel potatoes, boil, drain, add milk-butter-salt, mash, eat. There, there’s my recipe.
Mashed potatoes definitely fall into that special category of food that I learned to make just by observing my parents. The others are grilled cheese (butter two pieces of bread, put cheese between them, cook in pan, eat), spaghetti (cook noodles, brown hamburger, add jar of sauce, eat), and mac and cheese (cook noodles, drain, add milk and Velveeta, heat until melted, eat). No recipe required.
I think there’s something kinda special about these foods (and no, not the fact that they’re all awesomely carb-ful). Even though they’re very simple foods, I love that they’ve been “passed down” through observation/oral history/etc. and not through buying a cookbook or visiting a website or even through writing them on a recipe card. That’s the second-coolest way to cook! (the first is with an open flame.)
These little pita pizzas are kind of in that same tradition, in that it might be a stretch to call this a “recipe,” when it’s actually more of an idea. These are super simple, too, as long as you don’t go all out and make your own pita bread, hummus, and tzatziki (like I did. oops). Give em a try!
GREEK PITA PIZZAS (adapted from A Taste of Home Cooking)
pita bread (4 large pieces or 8 small pieces)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano (can sub dry, but fresh is better)
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, chopped
1 tomato, seeded and chopped
1 small cucumber, chopped
1/2 cup your favorite hummus
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
tzatziki sauce, for serving
1. Heat oven to 475. Place pita bread in single layer on baking sheet and pop them in the oven for a few minutes (5ish), so they brown slightly.
2. Meanwhile, combine oil, vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper in medium bowl. Add onion, olives, tomato, and cucumber, and toss to coat. Set aside.
3. Spread hummus over each piece of pita bread, leaving small border around the edges of the bread (I found I preferred a thinner layer of hummus, but do whatever you like). Top evenly with vegetable mixture, and then with feta cheese. Sprinkle mozzarella evenly over pizzas.
4. Cook pizzas until vegetables are softened and cheese is melted, about 6-8 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve with tzatziki sauce.
These were addictive! The veggies were extra yummy with the red wine vinegar and fresh oregano, and the feta lent the perfect tang. You should feel free to adjust quantities to your liking, but I found I liked them better when I went easy on the hummus and the feta and heavy on the veggies and mozzarella. And don’t forget the tzatziki — you can buy it premade, but it’s very quick to whip up your own, too. Just mix some greek yogurt with some grated cucumber (moisture squeezed out), pressed garlic, and a smidge of oil and vinegar. I got fancy and added some chopped dill and a few drops of hot sauce, but it’s all up to you!