Florencia Pizza Bistro

IMG_6283.jpg

Florencia Pizza Bistro is one of those locally owned neighborhood eateries. Ahwatukee has a lot of these little hidden gems because most of them are located in strip malls. This one has been around for quite some time and resides next door to the popular Melting Pot. They offer three types of pizza – Traditional, Olive Oil (Garlic, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Mozzarella Cheese with no tomato sauce) and Pesto (Basil Pesto Sauce with no tomato sauce). You can create your own with toppings (over 40 topping choices) or choose from one of their popular specialty pizza creations. Some of the names include the Snow White, Pomodora, Valentinos, Winchester, Clevenger, Malanzane, Bo-Be and the Green-Eyed Chicken. There are many more creations to choose from and they have vegetarian options as well. The dough is house made and their pizzas are thin-crust. I’m more of a thick crust person myself but actually found their thin crust quite enjoyable. They also have panini, calzones, salads and sandwiches if pizza is not on your radar. Their appetizer menu is not incredibly large but they have a nice variety to choose from. I got the mozzarella sticks and felt they were just average. We ordered the Clark’s Classic pizza which consisted of pepperoni and chicken marinated in buffalo sauce. I was a little worried the sauce would soak through the thin crust and make it soggy but it actually held up (even eating it as a leftover the next day). There is a small bar area to the side where you can order a glass of wine or beer. The owner is a Wildcat fan (boo…) and they’ve had fun fundraisers in the past during the annual ASU/UA football game to benefit the local high schools in the area. It wasn’t very busy when I visited but service was pretty good.

IMG_6281

Mozzarella Sticks

IMG_6282

Clark’s Classic

“Duel in the Dessert” fundraiser 

Florencia Pizza Bistro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Advertisements

Great Finds

ps3

My friend and I love looking for good finds at Trader Joe’s. She is the master at coming up with great party snacks from there. Here are a couple of recent items I picked up lately. The first is their pesto and quinoa in a jar. I love putting this on chicken or salads. Quinoa is obviously a big thing these days and I enjoy coming up with new recipes that include it. But to pair it with pesto (one of my favs), I have enjoyed this product. The Kale sprouts have been a great new side item for me. I made them for a friend the other night and we both agreed they are a hit. I’m looking forward to digging up some more extra goodies at the Joe’s.

ps2

Chicken with pesto quinoa and kale sprouts

ps1

Pesto quinoa on salad

 

Parade in White

Pesto’s Pizza & Wine Bar is a little establishment in Chandler that serves up gourmet pizzas and a large selection of wines. The restaurant has some unique decorations and has a fun atmosphere to it. I love the pesto dishes and the calzones. I attended a party tonight where everyone had to wear white.

Click to add a blog post for Pesto's Pizza & Wine Bar on Zomato

Portobello Mushroom & Almond Pesto Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 5 large portobello mushroom caps, thinly sliced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 14 1/2 ounce can  diced tomatoes with Italian herbs
  • 3 cups (about 10 ounces) sliced almonds, toasted
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • Grated peel and juice of 1 lemon
  • 6 no-boil lasagna sheets
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees . In a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over high heat. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add the tomatoes to the skillet, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, and cook until softened, 6 to 7 minutes.
  2. Using a food processor, process the toasted almonds, parmesan, garlic, lemon peel, lemon juice and remaining 1/2 cup olive oil into a coarse paste. Transfer the pesto to a bowl and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. In an 8-inch square baking dish, spread half the tomatoes across the bottom. Place 2 lasagna sheets on top. Spread a third of the pesto over the sheets; sprinkle with half the mozzarella and then half the mushrooms. Add another layer of lasagna sheets, pesto, mozzarella and mushrooms. Top with another layer of lasagna sheets, spread with the remaining pesto and then the remaining tomatoes. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake for 10 minutes more. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before slicing.

My friends the Kredits had a potluck at their house and I brought this lasagna. I guess word got I was cooking this dish and people were anticipating me bringing it (I was late of course). It was a hit and I look forward to making in again the future for get togethers. Below are some pictures of some other great food that was there.

 

 

Pesto

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 1 cup fresh Italian parsley
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan or romano cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons water

Directions

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender. Puree until the mixture forms a smooth, thick paste.

* I then saute it with alfredo sauce and chicken and pour it over penne noodles.