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Just over a month ago my little brother came to visit. It was so great to see him.

There had been two significant occurrences since the last time I saw him: #1. his second nephew was born and #2. a week before #1 occurred, he fell from a roofing job, breaking his leg and hip and sustaining a serious head injury. For a few days we weren’t sure if he was going to make it, but he is now running 3 miles a day and his head injury is now just a scar. Then our son was born under difficult circumstances, but is now healthy and beautiful.  It was wonderful to see my brother hold his nephew – a miracle embracing a miracle.

My brother and I love each other dearly but are at very different places in life. He – single and in college after serving in the marines, me – married with two little ones and a full time homemaker.

We can talk non-stop about one thing, though: food and nutrition.

As we talk I see changes in both him and myself. I convince him to switch to natural peanut butter and cut out artificial sweeteners. He even drank our raw milk the last time he was here! He encourages me to find more time for resistance training and general activity.

There is a Trader Joe’s where he now lives, so I had to show him the ropes. As we wandered the aisles – picking up natural peanut butter, of course – we came to the refrigerated section full of dips and spreads.

Him: “Have you ever had hummus?”

Me: “Once in college, but it wasn’t that great.”

Him: “No, it’s really good.”

Me: reading the label… “Looks good, but I can’t buy this. I could probably make it myself.”

Him: “What? No! I’m buying it for you.”

Apparently my super frugality can be a tad irritating.

One night, after my brother’s visit, I was trying to come up with dinner using what we already had on hand. I remembered his hummus in our refrigerator.

Then I remembered these flax crackers. We generally don’t eat cooked flax, but in searching for grain free pizza, this was a fair compromise. Besides, I needed something to spread that hummus on.

And if you read this, little brother, thanks for the visit and the hummus. You were right – they were both really good.

Grain Free Pizza with Hummus, Mushrooms and Feta

Crust

2 x  Garlic-Parmesan Flax Crackers

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a double batch of the cracker dough as instructed. Liberally butter a large pizza pan. Press the dough into the pan with your hands. Smooth it out until it is approximately 1/8 inch thick. Place in the oven and bake until center is no longer soft, about 15-20 minutes. Set aside while you prepare your toppings.

Toppings

10 oz. cremini mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
3 cups chopped tomatoes with juice
8 oz. garlic hummus, preferably picked out by your little brother
3 oz. feta cheese
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 small onion, sliced thin
olive oil for drizzling

Saute mushrooms in olive oil until caramelized. Add garlic powder, oregano, red pepper flakes and tomatoes. Simmer down until the juice has thickened into somewhat of a paste. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

Assembly: Spread hummus evenly over prepared pizza crust. Spread mushroom-tomato mixture over the hummus. Scatter cheese and onions on top of the mushroom-tomato mixture. Drizzle with olive oil.

Place back in the 400 degree oven for 10 minutes, or until warmed through.

Enjoy and remember how blessed we are to have family.