This is a sponsored post by Woolworths
One of the things I remember most about Chicago was their deep pan pizza. Olive oil from the thick crust oozed down my arm and mozzarella swung off my lip as I tried to catch the agile acrobat. It was divine.
Then there was the pizza I had in Bari, Italy. All it had on it was tomato sauce, garlic and cheese. It was the most delicious pizza I’ve ever eaten. It was 15 years ago and I can still taste it.
Travel and pizza go together so well. It’s rare to meet a traveller that doesn’t have a pizza story from places like Cambodia, Naples, Chicago, New York, and Sao Paulo.
Actually pizza goes well with anything: movie nights in, glasses of wine with friends, kid’s parties, and a lazy cooking attitude,
Gluten free food and travel
One of the first things I thought of when I knew I could no longer eat gluten was, Oh no I can’t eat pizza. Followed by I can’t have beer. And stir fry noodles. And cakes. and pasta. and vegemite!
Hell, I can’t eat anything.
Having gluten intolerance is scary. Food becomes an enemy and you feel like every bite holds a hidden poison. Sometimes I get fed up with the hassle of it, but knowing the outcomes I’d rather steer clear and embrace a new food world that makes me feel good.
It was a bit like when I first decided to go pescatarian; I thought I had limited options of salad and stir fries. My new choice forced me to dig deep and uncover a world of flavourful plant-based dishes.
Being pescatarian is a lot easier than being gluten-free.
I was devastated at first (mostly about the beer and pizza) because having dietary requirements when you travel is tough. There are little choices eating out on the road and I’m usually left with only one option: fries.
Most restaurants and take away outlets don’t understand that vegetarians can be gluten-free. You only have one option, or the other. I’ve recently attended functions and events where I’ve not been able to eat a thing. Not only do I starve, I get way tipsier than I should after a couple of glasses of wine. I’ve even considered a return to meat to give me more options.
I hate eating out now and just want to stay at home and cook my own meals. When I first realized the effect it was having on my health, I bemoaned to my sister in-law. “I don’t know what to eat, everything has gluten in it.”
“Have you tried the Woolworth’s Macro brand? They have some great things in their range and are pretty well-priced.” She went gluten-free for a few months while she was trying for a baby. (She had it by the way!)
I was not aware of the Macro range.
I went down to the local Woolies straight away and was amazed at what they had. I was so happy to write this post and support the Macro brand because they helped me so much to have food choices at prices that didn’t freak me out too much.
Since that moment, I have discovered a wonderful world of healthy gluten-free food. It’s inspired me to embrace my ability to create beautiful meals from scratch. I’ve become a food blog stalker, devouring recipes and trying my best to recreate them at home. I used to hate cooking, but now it’s become quite a pleasure.
Once again, I am discovering a wonderful world of food that suits the way I want to eat.
Cooking my own gluten free food
I’m even creating a recipe book of gluten-free meals you can cook on the travel road. There will be pasta, cakes, chocolate treats, salads, smoothies, stir-fries, curries and more. It will be all my favourite meals that are healthy, simple, and cheap to make.
And of course there will be pizza.
I’ve only just discovered the Woolworths Macro gluten free brand has a gluten-free pizza base. Before that, I’d wander by the freezer aisle silently wishing a frozen gluten-free pizza would jump out. Because that is what we used to do – frozen stuff. Now I make my own!
Last night, we tried our first pizza making adventure with dough we (almost) made from scratch. I was a little nervous. I don’t have great skills when it comes to baking. (Kalyra was quick to suggest I get cupcakes from the school canteen for her birthday instead of making them.)
I grabbed my mini-chef helpers and we set to work. We had a lot of fun cooking together. It’s usually mental hour at this time, but thanks to the gluten free pizza project, it was filled with teamwork, laughter, and enthusiasm. It reminded me of Friday nights spent making pizza with my Mum.
Because I am a terrible baker, and have a diet that rarely consists of bad food anymore, I couldn’t help but grab a gluten-free mud cake as I walked by. My sister (a chef) makes the worlds-best mud cake. I miss it terribly.
Thanks to the Macro brand, I no longer have to deny myself. A little bit of sugar once in a while does not hurt, right?
As far as packet mix cakes go, this one is pretty good. And it only took me five minutes to prepare. My kinda cake.
Like all good children do, Kalyra and Savannah lined up and fought over licking the bowl and spoon. And just like my Mum used to do, I lovingly passed it over with a kiss on the head for being such great helpers.
Do you want the gluten free pizza recipe?
I made two different types for you. You can throw any ingredients on a pizza and it will taste good. Knock yourself out when you make yours and get a little gourmet.
A great savings tip is to use what ever you have in your fridge. Make it work. I was a disappointed that our fridge was missing anchovies and I forgot to buy them at Woolies. Pizzas are just not pizzas without the anchovies, don’t you agree? (Let me know in the comments, if you are a lover or a hater.)
1. Vegetarian Gluten free pizza
- Woolworth’s Macro Gluten Free pizza base
- passatta (tomato sauce)
- mixed herbs- I used fresh basil, rosemary and thyme
- thinly sliced capsicum
- sliced kalamata olives
- sundried tomato
- sliced mushrooms
- mozerella cheese
- Make the dough following the instructions on the packet (will take two minutes, it’s so easy) (Let your children roll it out, they’ll love it)
- Spread the passatta and sprinkle on the herbs
- Spread out your fillings. Have as much as you need and desire.
- Sprinkle cheese on top. (Have enough to satisfy your children’s cheese addiction)
- Bake in the oven @ 180 C for about 15 mins
2. Prawn, roasted capsicum and pesto gluten-free pizza
For this one, I had home-made pesto and raw prawns in the freezer I could use.
- 2 handfuls of prawns
- Fresh basil, thyme, rosemary (use what herbs you have lying around)
- thinly sliced red capsicum
- Passatta (tomato sauce)
- 1/4 cup cashews soaked in water for 1-4 hrs
- 1 med shallots, peeled
- 1 garlic cloves
- 1 cup basil leaves
- 1.5 Tbls olive oil
- juice of 1 lemon
- salt and pepper to taste
Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until creamy and smooth. I used the left overs in scrambled eggs the next morning for breakfast. Or save it for pasta or to put on top of a piece of grilled fish.
Prawn and Pesto Pizza Directions:
- Defrost the prawns and pesto
- Make the dough as per instructions
- Spread the passatta and sprinkle on the herbs
- Lay your capsicum and spread the prawns
- Smear the pesto over the toppings
- Sprinkle cheese on top (we overdosed a little. Savannah was adamant she had to do more, more.)
I was impressed with how the gluten free pizzas turned out. I think I could have let the base cook a little longer. Next time, I might cook it for a while first before putting the cheese on. It’s hard to balance cooking the base right without overcooking the cheese.
These gluten free pizzas were so simple and easy to make. They will definitely go in my road trip recipe book.
Because let’s face it, it is just not travel unless a pizza is involved.
Do you struggle with gluten intolerance?
How do you cope with travel?
Do you think travel and pizza go together?