CHEW THIS! Garlic Bread Pizzas

The following “Chew This!” column originally appeared in “The Courier-Times” and / or “The Shelbyville News”. Check their websites for further information and dates.

Garlic Bread Pizzas are perfect for appetizer or dinner

Blaise Doubman

It is no secret that I love pizza! Anything and everything pizza, I have either already eaten it, tried it or made it. Chicken bacon ranch pizza? Chicken fettuccine pizza? Spinach and artichoke pizza? White pizza? Dessert pizza? Hawaiian pizza with extra pineapple? Dill pickle pizza with mozzarella cheese and sprinkled dill? Yep, tried, loved and enjoyed. I have made pizza using dough that has to rest for several days, dough you buy frozen in the frozen area of your local grocery store and even pizza dough made using puff pastry! Which, I might add, is still one of my most popular recipes on my website. The puff pastry bakes up and flakes up and creates a thousand buttery layers and it really must be tried and experienced to understand. However, the recipe I am sharing here today, may be quickly becoming my favorite pizza version!

When I got to thinking about different versions of pizza and what I could use for the base, or the dough, I thought, why not garlic bread? How perfect would that be? There is already butter and garlic on the toast and sometimes even cheese, so how bad could that be!? I tried it and let me tell you, it was fabulous! This is the perfect recipe for appetizer or main dish. I use my favorite jar of tomato sauce for the pizza sauce here, but you could make your own, use white sauce, or even substitute tomato paste like Pizza King does! Whatever you want, try it out! Same goes with the cheese. I use fresh shredded mozzarella cheese but use whatever type you like! Use a mixture of mozzarella and cheddar for a more savory approach, which was my Grandpa Max’s favorite cheese topping. You may be wondering why the fennel seed. Well, just to be honest, it makes the ground beef taste a little more like sausage. Why not just use sausage? You could but keep in mind that your pizza will be a little greasier. Plus, I like the taste of fennel seasoned ground beef, all of the pizza chains pull this trip, most just do not know it. Pull this out from the oven and drizzle with olive oil for a little extra richness!

Garlic Bread Pizzas

Leftovers are delicious covered and chilled, then warmed up in a low oven for a few minutes.

2 boxes of sliced loaf garlic bread

1 pound ground beef

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon fennel seed

½ teaspoon onion powder

½ teaspoon paprika

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Sliced pepperoni

Jar of tomato sauce

Start by preheating your oven to 425 degrees F.

Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Place the garlic bread onto the prepared baking sheets.

In a large skillet, brown the ground beef. Drain well and then return to the skillet.

Add in the salt, black pepper, fennel seed, onion powder and paprika.

Once combined, set aside.

Place about two tablespoons of the tomato sauce onto each slice of garlic bread. Followed by 2 tablespoons of the ground beef mixture, then 2 tablespoons of the shredded mozzarella cheese. Place about 3-4 slices of pepperoni on each garlic bread slice.

Bake, in preheated oven for 10 minutes. Remove and serve hot.

Ask and Answer: So many of you have written to me about my “BBQ Tuna” recipe that I posted on my website recently. Yes, I agree with most of you, it does sound strange, but it is really delicious! I love it served alongside celery and carrots or served in the middle of white rice. Paula Deen first served something similar at the start of her “Bag Lady” days. I know it may be a bit controversial of a recipe but really, visit my website and try it for yourself! It really is delicious and as one reader put it, when served warm it tastes just like pulled pork! Strange but good. And with only 2 ingredients – tuna and BBQ sauce, how much easier does it get?

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