How Does Your Garden Grow?

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Young gardener

A young man tends to the lettuce in his garden. Annett Vauteck/iStockphoto hide caption

itoggle caption Annett Vauteck/iStockphoto

With rising food costs and a salmonella outbreak sickening over 1,000 people this summer, more Americans seem to be turning to their own backyards for produce.

Barbara Ellis, author of The Veggie Gardener's Answer Book, and Rosalind Creasy, landscape designer and author of The Complete Book of Edible Landscaping and Rosalind Creasy's Recipes From The Garden, share their tips for making your thumb a little greener and help supply food for your dinner table.

Mexican-Style Pizza with Cilantro

Creasy's Pizza
Tuttle Publishing

From Rosalind Creasy's Recipes From the Garden

This unusual pizza marries the best Southwestern seasonings with Italian basics.

Paste tomatoes are best for this recipe as their meaty fruits won't make your pizza soggy. If you want, you can substitute Monterey Jack cheese that is pre-seasoned with jalapenos and leave out the minced jalapenos.

    1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
    1 medium onion, sliced
    3 large cloves garlic, pressed, divided
    1 uncooked 10" pizza shell, your own or a commercial one
    1/3 pound (1 1/4 cups grated) Monterey Jack cheese
    1 to 6 teaspoons minced jalapeno peppers, to taste
    2 medium paste tomatoes, sliced
    Freshly ground black pepper to taste
    3 to 4 finely chopped tablespoons of fresh cilantro
    1/3 teaspoon cumin seeds

Preheat the oven to 400°. Heat a medium skillet, add olive oil. Add the onions and two cloves of pressed garlic and sauté them over medium heat until the onion is soft and translucent, about ten minutes.

Place the pizza shell on a baking sheet. Grate the cheese and distribute it evenly over the pizza shell, reserving about 1/2 cup of cheese for the top.

Spread the onions and jalapeno peppers over the cheese. Slice the tomatoes and place on top of cheese and onions. Grind black pepper over the tomatoes. Mix the chopped cilantro with remaining clove of pressed garlic and distribute mixture over the pizza. Sprinkle cumin seeds and reserved 1/2 cup of cheese over the pizza.

Bake for approximately 20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and the crust is light brown. Cut pizza into 8 slices and serve immediately.

Serves four.

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