We're lucky in that our little man has been a wonderful eater so far, for a 2-year-old. Sure, he requests inordinate amounts of ketchup and occasionally dips his sandwiches in his milk, but he loves to try new foods, enjoys his vegetables, and usually eats most of what we put in front of him.
And I finally (finally!) got him to eat homemade cookies recently.
My next obstacle? Pizza. He'll eat a few bites here and there on rare occasions (or when dipped in jalapeno cheese dip), but on the whole, my little guy rejects the notion of pizza. Which is weird. He loves lasagna. He loves sandwiches. Isn't pizza a little like an open-faced lasagna sandwich?
So this is my latest attempt: Pizza on a stick. I saw this idea in Food Network magazine when they ran a feature on state fair foods. Apparently toddlers, like fair-goers, appreciate any food that is served on sticks. So it seemed like it was worth a try.
And did it work, you might be asking? Yes, indeed. Jack thought the pizza sauce was ketchup and went through three bowls' worth, but he gobbled down his pizza ... until it fell off the stick.
Pizza on a Stick
Makes 8 sticks
1 tube refrigerated pizza dough
Flour, for dusting
1 cup pizza sauce
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 cup chopped toppings, such as pepperoni, olives, and mushrooms
8 popsicle sticks or lollipop sticks
Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
Dash of garlic powder
Dash of oregano
Extra pizza sauce, for dipping
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Roll out pizza dough on lightly floured surface to about 12" by 16".
3. Cut in fourths, and then cut each quarter in half diagonally to make 8 triangles.
4. Brush each triangle with pizza sauce, leaving a 1/2" border around the perimeter.
5. Sprinkle with cheese and add toppings.
6. Slightly fold in the two far corners of each triangle, and then roll up the dough from the long side first, sort of like a burrito or egg roll. Press gently to seal.
7. Lay each roll on the baking sheet, and carefully insert popsicle or lollipop sticks.
8. Brush rolls with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with garlic powder, oregano, and Parmesan cheese. Add any remaining toppings, as well.
9. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Serve with heated pizza sauce, for dipping.