Nutrients are found in the food we eat, and they provide our bodies with what we need to maintain biological functions, to grow, to repair, for hormone production and everything else. A lack of even one essential nutrient will affect the body to the extent that disease and even death may occur as a result. There are 5 categories of essential nutrients that make up one’s diet. These are proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins and minerals.
Each week we will educate you about the importance of eating a healthy variety of foods. Subscribers to our website will learn how to plan meals to optimise nutritional intake, lose fat and obtain vibrant health.
This week, we are writing about protein, which is the second most abundant component in your body, after water. Your body requires 8 to 10 essential amino acids in order to function, and all amino acids can only be supplied through your diet. Animal proteins are complete proteins, but vegan/vegetarian proteins are incomplete as they lack one or more of the essential amino acids. The good news is that one can combine vegetarian protein with another essential nutrient group to make these proteins complete.
It is important to have healthy treats occasionally and today you are in for a gourmet one! Our homemade pizza is not only super delicious and nutritious – it is inexpensive too! We made it with cheddar cheese, but you can substitute that with a vegan cheese if you like.
Healthy Homemade Gourmet Pizza (serves 8)
Cost of ingredients in May 2020: Approximately R15.00 per person (R120.00 for 6 medium pizza’s)
For the dough
- 600g brown bread flour or whole wheat flour
- 400g white cake flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 14g instant yeast
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 650ml luke warm water
For the toppings
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 x 70g tomato paste
- Approx. 500g grated mozzarella or cheddar cheese (or vegan alternative)
- Garlic, mixed dried herbs, salt and pepper
- Optional: pineapple pieces, sliced mushrooms, sliced peppers, pieces of cooked meat/chicken, avocado and rocket to add afterwards
Set the oven on 180 degrees Celsius.
Mix flour and salt in a large bowl and make a well in the middle. Add the sugar and yeast to the water and stir with a whisk to dissolve. Pour the water mixture into the well and mix with a fork until you need to use your hands to knead the dough. Cover the dough with a dish towel and let it rest for 20 minutes.
Divide the dough into 3 balls (if you have 3 large oven trays; alternatively divide into 6 balls if you have average size oven trays approximately 38cm x 27cm). Roll each ball out with a rolling pin until the dough is thin and place them on greased oven trays (we lined our trays with baking paper instead – saves on washing up 😉).
In a bowl, mix the 2 tins of tomato with garlic, herbs and spices. Spread the tomato mixture thinly over each pizza base, sprinkle with grated cheese and add toppings of your choice (except avocado and rocket – remember to put that on after it is baked). Bake each pizza for approximately 20 minutes or until the sides are golden brown.
Take the pizza out of the oven and slide onto a wooden chopping board. Add sliced avocado and rocket. Cut the pizza into slices and serve. Yummy!