Shrimp and Basil Pizza…In a Skillet!!!

Bom Dia! (me trying to keep up my very limited Portuguese)

Last week, I came home to my apartment after a long day of classes, starving. I hate when you come home starving and exhausted, because it generally means that cooking something delicious is not a feasible option. Who has the time or energy at that point??? And the worst part about it is that that is exactly when you want to cook most – to de-stress, to create, to enjoy. What to do…

Make pizza. In a skillet. In about fifteen minutes. Yep.

I found a recipe online for pizza in a skillet using self-rising dough, and all of your favorite ingredients. I don’t have self-rising dough, so I looked up how to make it yourself! The best part about pizza is that it can be as simple as three ingredients (dough, sauce, cheese) and as crazy and convoluted as you like! I happened to have shrimp available, and some basil because of the awesome basil tree in my apartment, and thought shrimp and basil pizza sounded too good to be tired for.

If you don’t like Shrimp and Basil Pizza, remember that you can modify this to any way you want! Use white alfredo sauce instead of tomato based sauce. Put sausage or pepperoni or chicken. Add onions. Forget the basil. Put other veggies. WHATEVER YOU WANT, YOU CAN MAKE IT! Explore that creativity!



  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 tspn baking powder
  • salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (or other oil)
  • 2/3 cup water
  • pizza/tomato/pasta sauce
  • mozzarella cheese (can use other types if you prefer)
  • basil
  • garlic




Start by mixing together 1 cup of flour, 1/4 tspn of baking powder, and a dash of salt. I happen to have this fancy salt that I bought at Trader Joe’s that has a mix of Thyme, Lemon, and Bay in it, which adds a lovely tint to the mixture. Make sure to stir this well, taking out any large clumps. Use a fork to stir it all thoroughly, as this will act like sifting the flour (more sifting – better texture of dough).



Additionally, prepare your shrimp (if you choose to use shrimp). This means peeling and washing. Trust me, you don’t want to try peeling later. I’ve done it before, and it is by far a much larger pain in the butt.


Next, put about 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a COLD skillet. Make sure your skillet is large enough that you’ll be able to spread out the dough to a roughly 1/4″ layer.



Then, add the flour directly into the pan. Add 2/3 cup water as well, and stir! Be careful, as you don’t want to push any of the ingredients over the sides. This will form a sticky dough that you can spread out evenly over the base of the pan.

IMG_3432IMG_3434IMG_3435Now, add some amazing pasta sauce! This is entirely up to you as to how much to add, but you want to make sure to cover all of the edges, right up to the pan. I didn’t do as good a job of showing that in my photo, but trust me, it makes a difference. I myself do not like to be overloaded with pasta sauce, so I was a little less liberal.

IMG_3437Then, add cheese. Again, this is to taste. I myself am a cheesy person, so I tend to put A LOT. Nom nom, mozzarellanom. Just to clarify, the skillet has been OFF and COLD this entire time. You do not want to be cooking yet!!

IMG_3436At this point, you should prepare the other ingredients you want on top. I put the shrimp in a skillet with a little bit of garlic salt, and cooked them most of the way through. The purpose of not cooking the meats all the way is to keep them from overcooking when they spend time cooking in the pizza. Transfer your shrimp to the pizza and add any other adornments, such as basil or garlic.

IMG_3439At this point, you’ve added all kinds of amazing things to your pizza. It is looking mighty tasty. All you have to do now is cover the pizza, and let it cook on Medium heat for about 10 minutes. Yep, that’s all.

IMG_3441My guess is that the moisture that accumulates in there helps the dough to rise and to cook it thoroughly, without burning. Additionally, you can check periodically (maybe after 7 or 8 minutes) to ensure that nothing is burning, or to see if it needs longer. In the end, you should allow it to cool for a few minutes by transferring to a plate or dish. I myself was too impatient and hungry to wait, but I highly recommend it!

Next time you have a long day and need a little pick me up, consider making pizza in a pan!

Bom Apetite!







Lamb Pops = Waaay Better than Cake Pops


My lovely readers (however many of you there may be),

I apologize that it has been so long since I last posted! Beside the craziness of finals, basketball, and spring break, this new quarter is certainly testing my stamina and patience. Regardless, I still find time (and joy) in cooking, and want to share my most recent culinary adventure: lamb pops!

I believe that I was inspired with the name for this by a dish at a restaurant somewhere (helpful, I know) and find it slightly hilarious given the obsession with cake pops lately. Thus, this insanely easy dish is called “lamb pops”.

What I like about these are that they are individual, so you can eat as few (or as many) as you like. The lamb meat is relatively lean, so it’s a lighter meal, and there are a lot of options for seasoning the meat. The only sad part is that it is not the easiest (or cheapest) of meats to purchase, especially in a high-priced college area like Westwood. Thank god for Costco, right?


To begin, let’s gather ingredients. For this meal, I chose to keep it simple: garlic, salt, and pepper. That’s right, just three ingredients. Sometimes, simple is better. As my parents always say, “KISS: Keep It Simple Stupid”.

IMG_3397Start by evenly cutting the lamb off of the rack. Cutting them evenly will allow them to cook evenly later, and keep anything from over-cooking or drying out. Using a sharp knife is essential here, as you don’t want to ruin the cuts of the lamb.


IMG_3399Heat up a few tablespoons of oil in a skillet on medium heat. I love Trader Joe’s spanish olive oil, as it has a deliciously nutty and fatty taste. While the oil heats up, start rubbing the salt and pepper into each side of the lamb pops.


IMG_3403Mince or dice up the garlic and toss into the pan. Then immediately add the pops. These lamb pops will definitely not take long to cook, especially if they are thinner. Cook each lamb pop for 2-3 minutes on each side for medium-rare, 3-4 minutes on each side for medium. Because they are thin, it will take no time at all. 😉

Note: you can hold off on adding the garlic for a bit if you are afraid of the garlic burning.

IMG_3404Once you have cooked them, transfer to a plate and enjoy. The beauty of the finished project is great, as the oil and sugars in the meat create a beautiful, crunchy, crystallized glaze to them.  This dish screams to be accompanied by rice or cous cous. I am definitely obsessed with these right now, and highly recommend you trying them out!

Bom Apetite!