With St. Patrick’s Day, right around the corner I have been going over all my Irish recipes and the memories I have associated with those recipes.  No liquid was safe around me on St. Patrick’s Day; I would put green food coloring in everything drinkable.  I always had corned beef, cabbage and my Irish soda bread but the time I remember most was when I was eating alone with my kids.  We LOVED pizza and I always made my own dough so I thought I would surprise them and make green pizza dough! We still talk about it today; it was delicious as usual but looked completely revolting.  This is a really nice pizza dough recipe (just don’t add the green food coloring) that can be made in your processor, standing mixer or by hand.  Basically mix the wet ingredients into the dry and kneed by hand or machine until the dough is smooth.  I have added my recipe for Irish soda bread at the end so as not to ignore the other side of my heritage.


1/2-cup warm water, about 105/110° if the water is too hot it will kill the yeast, if it is too cold the yeast will not germinate.  If you have an instant read thermometer, use it.
1-envelope dry granulated yeast
1 1/4-cups room temperature water
3-Tablespoons good olive oil
4-cups bread flour
2-teaspoons sea salt
Olive oil and coarse cornmeal

Put the half-cup of warm water in a bowl and sprinkle in the yeast and let stand until it has dissolved and swells, about five minutes.  Add the remaining water, olive oil, salt and stir to combine. 

If you are using a processor or standing mixer, put the flour in first, give it a whirl and then slowly add the liquid until it forms a ball.  Continue mixing about another 30 seconds with a processor or change to the dough hook with the standing mixer and mix for about 5 minutes.  If you are using your hands just kneed on the counter until the dough is smooth and elastic. 

Coat a bowl with olive oil and let the dough rest covered in a warm place until double in bulk.  I preheat my oven to 200° and then turn it off and let the dough rest in the oven with the door cracked.

Punch the dough down, split in half.  Take two 12-inch pizza pans and spread with a light coating of olive and a sprinkling of corn meal to prevent dough from sticking to the pan.  Top with your favorite sauce and cheese.  Bake in 450° oven for approximately 15-20 minutes.  Makes two 12-inch pizzas.

You can freeze this dough too and cook at a later date.  The next time you are in the market pick up “House of Pasta” pizza dough in the frozen food department right next to the pizza and bread dough.  It comes in twos and can be kept in your freezer for last minute pizza that taste just as good as anything you can make on your own.

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Toby making Pizzas
I have two really light vinaigrettes; one is made with lemon juice and the other with Balsamic vinegar.  Both recipes can be made for any amount you need.  The important thing to remember is that the ratio of oil to acid is three to one (3-1).  Having said that let your own taste buds be your guide.  You may prefer your dressing with a little more acid.  Start with the 3 to 1 ratio and adjust to your liking.  Make the dressings in a blender, processor or simple screw top jar.


1/4-cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 2-3 lemons)
3/4-cups good extra virgin olive oil
1-teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 to 2-teaspoons dried Italian seasoning or a combination of any fresh herbs you like
1/4-teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste

Place all your ingredients in a screw top jar and shake vigorously.  This will store in the refrigerator for at least two weeks.


1/4-cup Balsamic vinegar
3/4-cup “Blended” oil or Canola oil
1-teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4-teaspoon garlic powder
1/4-teaspoon salt
Pepper to taste

Place all your ingredients in a screw top jar and shake vigorously.  This will store in the refrigerator for at least two weeks.



3-cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2-teaspoons each of salt, baking soda and sugar
1/2-cup raisins or currents
1 -teaspoons caraway seeds
1-Tablespoon melted butter
1-1/3-cups buttermilk
If you do not have buttermilk on hand, add about 1-Tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice per 1 cup regular milk.

Mix/sift dry ingredients together in a bowl, add raisins and caraway seeds.  Make a well in the center add buttermilk and melted butter.  Mix well and turn out onto board/ counter and knead until all the dough comes together.
Divide into two balls, cut a cross on top of each and sprinkle lightly with a little extra flour.  Bake in a 375° oven for about 25-30 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean.  Makes two small loaves.  Serve warm.