Flatbread Pizza with Sausage + Zucchini

Italian, Main Dish, Pizza, Pork, Quick Meals | 27 comments

We had kindergarten orientation for Logan today. He has been so ready for summer to be over and get back to school (he loved preschool and loves to learn). I have been ready for him to go back to school (summer has been particularly trying this year). We got up all excited and anticipating a fun morning. Getting to meet the teachers and see the school. Gearing up for the first day. That is not what happened.


Logan had a great time with a group of kindergarten teachers and a small group of kids while the parents had a meeting with another one of the teachers. And I use the word “meeting” loosely. It really felt very unwelcoming and much more like a lecture. More than once I wanted to raise my hand (were were in school after all. I might be in trouble for talking out of turn) and remind the woman (who also didn’t bother to introduce herself) that we are all parents, most of multiple children and have raised them thus far without any of their help and didn’t need to be spoken to in such a condescending tone. But I kept my mouth shut because I don’t like confrontation.


As it turns out, we aren’t allowed to walk our child to his kindergarten class on the first day. Instead we drop him off at the curb where the teachers will “collect” the kids and sort them into the proper classroom based on their color coded ID badge. I am not allowed ever passed the front office unless I am a volunteer, but volunteers aren’t allowed to bring other children, so since I still have a 2 year old at home I likely won’t ever be able to volunteer without getting a babysitter. I can’t visit and observe the classroom not can I eat lunch with him except on designated days such as Thanksgiving feast. I’ll try not to rant too much, but the whole vibe I got was not warm and community oriented. Eric said he felt like it was a “child factory.” Say goodbye to your parental rights once your child steps out of the car.


It was definitely an emotionally draining meeting. And I am no longer excited about kindergarten. We had an amazing experience for 2 1/2 years at our school district run preschool and at the Montessori school Logan went to for summer camp this year. And now I’m just stunned. I was never a parent who thought kindergarten would be a hard transition. We are both ready. But I’m not ready for this school and their rigidity. I am so torn on what we should do. I loved the Montessori school, felt safe their, and Logan was happy. I would love to send him there, but it is expensive.


I wish I had the ingredients for this recipe, because it’s a no-brainer. No over thinking. No exhausting steps or big mess. The perfect meal for a day like today where I just want to curl up on the couch and watch TV or read a book (right now I’m reading Georgia’s Kitchen) and forget all about how much I don’t like this school.

I tweeted a mention of this recipe a few weeks ago, not really intending to blog about it because it was just something we through together on a crazy, busy day…kind of like the day we are having today. Except then, several of you asked when I’d post it. So here we go. I did happen to take pictures, but just in case. The final image isn’t the best because we are in monsoon season, so every day around dinner time the big bad clouds start rolling in and it gets very dark. A quick drive by post with a recipe for Flatbread Pizza with Sausage and Zucchini (among other things). Please excuse the estimation of measurements. I definitely wasn’t taking notes during this recipe. I had also planned to grill these, but remember it’s monsoon season. We baked them instead.

Flatbread Pizza with Sausage and Zucchini

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4 pocketless pitas
olive oil
a handful of fresh basil, sliced into strips
bite sized fresh marinated mozzarella balls (about 6-8 per pita)
fresh grated Parmesan cheese
crumbled Italian sausage, about 1 cup
1 small zucchini, diced
1 small yellow crooked neck squash, diced
1/4 of a red onion, diced
1/2 of a red bell pepper, diced


Brush the tops of each pita bread with olive oil. Top with basil. Sprinkle the pita bread with sausage, zucchini, yellow squash, red onion, and bell pepper. Cut the mozzerella balls in half and sprinkle on top of the other toppings. Bake at 400 degrees, or grill, until the pita is slightly crispy and the cheese is bubbly. Sprinkle with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, cut into wedges and serve.

Note: You could probably saute the vegetables first if you wanted to, but I didn't bother. Quick, easy meal was what the doctor ordered. I might add some mushrooms next time. It's an easy recipe to customize to your liking. Just add extra vegetables for a no-meat version.

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    Shanna ~ My Favorite Everything - August 04, 2010 @ 10:18 pm

    SO sorry about the kindergarten ordeal! Funny we had a similar instance with a preschool, though not nearly as intense as you had!! But I ultimately decided to wait a year and signed our 2 yo up for a wonderfully warm family run daycare a couple of days a week instead. MUCH better for all of us right now! BTW, laughing about your post! I posted about breakfast pizza this AM using flatbread! Will definitely try yours out! Good luck with kindergarten!!


  • 2
    Joni N. - August 04, 2010 @ 11:04 pm

    I read your tweets early today about the kindy meeting and how unhappy you were. I'm sorry. I wish it'd gone better. Maybe it'll turn out better than you think. Hoping, hoping, hoping! My daughter starts Kindy on 8/18 and it should be a fairly easy transition since she went to Pre-K there last year.Your flatbread pizza looks divine. But I must ask: Do your children eat that? I've tried and tried but my 5- and 2.5-year-old will not eat zucchini and the like. It's so frustrating.


  • 3
    Katie @ goodLife {eats} - August 04, 2010 @ 11:08 pm

    Joni – No my kids won't eat that unfortunately. My daughter will eat the cheese and sausage. We offer the toppings to her but not as a piece of pizza. My son won't touch most of the meals I make. He is extremely picky…so picky we see doctors to deal with it. And not just picky, but has fear over trying anything new. He usually has his own meal for dinner and is required to at least taste a bite of something that we are eating. Like last night we had pizza and salad with lots of veggies so he had to have a carrot out of the salad.


  • 4
    Sheila @ Dodging Raindrops - August 04, 2010 @ 11:48 pm

    I'm sorry your school is so awful! I'm glad our school is so welcoming to parents. Yes, it is a private school but not too expensive.


  • 5
    Katie @ Healthy Heddleston - August 04, 2010 @ 11:55 pm

    The flatbread pizza looks yummy. I'm sorry to hear about the difficulty with the kindergarten! I hope it ends up being a better experience than what it seems like it is up front.


  • 6
    Katlyn- - August 05, 2010 @ 12:00 am

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE talk to your Principal about it. A lot of times that is coming from the "teacher" and is not necessarily school policy. School is a two way street in my book. They are the experts so they do the bulk of the teaching. But you are responsible for the education your child gets and are their only voice in the matter. I'm a firm believer in "Squeakly wheel gets the oil". So go on and be a squeakly wheel girl! How do they expect you to raise your children together if you are not allowed to pass through the front door. Its elementary school, not prison. Talk to the principal. PLEASE!


  • 7
    Kelsey - August 05, 2010 @ 12:15 am

    Yep, that sounds like elementary schools these days. They're so protective about the adults on campus thing that they have all these places on lockdown!


  • 8
    Susan Being Snippy - August 05, 2010 @ 12:16 am

    I would be totally stunned to have those rules placed on me when my children were in school. I often just wandered over to the school my kids were in and sometimes would help in the school office or do things to help out any of the teachers who asked. Mind you this was way back 15 years ago and both my kids are out of school and into higher education. I remember talking with other parents of the time and we all agreed that teachers worked for US and also that there are more parents than teachers, so if we wanted something we would go to the principal and usually any issues were quickly resolved. So as Katlyn said go to the principal — your children's education should be an "open book" all the time!


  • 9
    Jenna - August 05, 2010 @ 1:35 am

    Aggie, from Aggie's Kitchen told me about your site…yup, she was right, it's amazing. Love it. Gorgeous food photography!


  • 10
    We Are Not Martha - August 05, 2010 @ 2:25 am

    Awww I'm SO sorry. That's awful. I know it probably doesn't help, but at least your son sounds like he'll be able to do well anywhere. I was the mess of a kid who totally FREAKED out about leaving my mom for 5 seconds and would probably have done horribly in these conditions. But Logan sounds like he will thrive no matter what… But I know doesn't help you right now :( Also, this flatbread looks awesome. SO colorful and fun!Sues


  • 11
    Kristen - August 05, 2010 @ 3:47 am

    :( I'm so sorry Katie. This is where the parents need to step in and go to the principal. There is a difference between keeping your kids protected, and letting the parents be involved some. Our school has the no siblings rule, which I do get, although it bugs me. I get a babysitter whenever I do want to go up just because I think it is worth it.The don't walk your kids to the classroom on the first day thing, though, is ridiculous!I have a love / hate relationship with school. No one takes care or loves your kids the way you would and it is very hard to let them go knowing that.


  • 12
    Kerstin - August 05, 2010 @ 4:58 am

    You can't go in the building or walk them in the classroom? That's crazy – I wonder why they have all these rules? Looks like the perfect way to enjoy summer squash though – yum!


  • 13
    Charlene - August 05, 2010 @ 2:19 pm

    Katie, love the recipe! Unfortunately, your meeting and the school's rules sound consistent with what I've seen for the last 24 years of parenting. Good luck – it will take some getting used to – and I hope Logan has a terrific year!


  • 14
    Charlene - August 05, 2010 @ 2:22 pm

    PS: :0) I should mention that I think the reason there is a no-room drop off policy for the smaller children is because of the separation anxiety that ensues when dropped off at the room. Transition seems to be easier for them if they all meet as a group outside and the departure from parents is quick. :0) (just my experience….)


  • 15
    Tessa - August 05, 2010 @ 6:36 pm

    I'm glad you posted this!! :) I'm having difficulty photographing dinners around monsoon season too here in AZ. It gets so dark and orange-y outside. I'm sorry to hear about your family's lousy experience with the school, that's really a shame. If the school was willing to offer explanations for all these rules, I'm sure the parents would feel a lot better dropping their children off curb-side every morning. Hopefully little Logan has a terrific year :)


  • 16
    pajamachef - August 06, 2010 @ 7:55 pm

    wow, that school ordeal sounds crazy. i have a lot of teacher friends and some school policies are just absurd these days. but i guess for a variety of reasons (wacko parents, security, etc.) they're somewhat necessary? when we have kids i'm sure it'll be worse. oh well. i do hope your situation gets better. and those pizzas look great! i'd just have to make it for me, i don't think my husband would appreciate all the "scary" toppings (i.e. not pepperoni!).


  • 17
    Andrea - August 07, 2010 @ 12:22 am

    Katie, My daughter came from a wonderful kindergarten experience into a school that had almost identical rules in 1st grade. It was horrible. It was explained to me that the reason that we were not allowed in to "interrupt" was because with all they had to cram into each day they would fall off schedule with ANY interruptions. As a result of the minute breakdown of the days, my daughter, who is a very smart, but somewhat quiet child, got behind. I was not given a single heads up (since I was not allowed to even check her desk) until Parent teacher conferences came around! You must voice your concern to the principal and make sure that you keep a close tab on everything! My MIL is a 1st grade teacher, also (15yrs)… and was HORRIFIED when she heard these rules… On a better note… I LOVE your pizza! And your site.. thank you for all of your hard work. You help my life to be a little easier!


  • 18
    Simply Life - August 07, 2010 @ 11:14 am

    wow! I love how colorful that is! Looks great!


  • 19
    Queen of the Click - August 09, 2010 @ 7:20 pm

    I'm a teacher so I am going to offer you a school view. The person speaking is probably a little nervous speaking to parents. They may not have looked that way, but remember teachers speak to children all day, not adults. She may have wanted to give the impression that she was confident and in charge. She also probably didn't want the parents to interject because she might have lost control.I'm a 6th grade teacher so in September my students start middle school. Many parents are nervous for their children to start at a new school. All the students are a bit nervous, but now they have their peers to talk with and their teachers to reassure them. I also think asking parents not to come with other children is probably for safety reasons. Maybe the school (or school district) had a prior accident with a visiting child.Relax, Logan is going to do wonderfully there!In two or three weeks, you may want to drop one of the teachers an e-mail and tell her that you just wanted to touch base and ask how Logan is doing.


  • 20
    Anonymous - August 11, 2010 @ 1:46 am

    not allowing a parent to walk the child to the class is ridiculous. when a school doesn't want you involved (and this is a definite sign they don't want you involved), there will be negative consequences.


  • 21
    Tiffany - August 11, 2010 @ 3:19 pm

    You have no idea how happy I am to find this via Mint. I recently moved into a new (old) house and the oven doesn't work. So even though it's so hot outside, we've been grilling a lot this summer & we're running out of ideas. Can't wait to make this! Thank you.


  • 22
    Homedotmade - August 14, 2010 @ 1:49 pm

    As the wife of a teacher who also works in a school, let me offer you another perspective. We have the same rules in our school, but it's done for the safety of the children in most cases. They don't let just anyone walk in, if you have a legitimate reason to be there, you are required to be signed in and in some schools they do a background check based on your driver's license. Scary sounding, but true.The reason for most schools not allowing siblings is not necessarily safety, but the 'distraction' factor. I have two of my own and how easy is it to get sidetracked my the needs of the other child when the school is counting on you to be a productive volunteer.I wish they had approached it with the parents in a less harsh way, but there are reasons for it that have nothing to do with not wanting to be in partnership with the parents.


  • 23
    Jenniebites - August 16, 2010 @ 11:23 am

    the rule about walking your kids to the classroom sounds like it is in place because sometimes it's the parents, not the students, who have the hardest time transitioning and they don't make mornings any easier for their kids. the rule about going through the office is absolutely for safety and also (if you have really involved parents at the school) so that parents don't catch teachers off-guard and unexpectedly before, in the middle of, or after the school day. you'd be surprised at how many parents want to come in and chat about how their child is doing without setting up an appointment. the school will give you more politically-correct reasons for the rules, but that's why they're really there. they're pretty typical rules for an elementary school, and i truly hope you have a positive experience there. kindergarten is a difficult grade to teach because a lot of parents are super worried about sending us their babies for the first time. and i totally agree with the comment about sending the teacher an email after about two weeks. you might be surprised, she might email you first.


  • 24
    Style, She Wrote - August 18, 2010 @ 10:54 pm

    This looks amazing! I can't wait to try it. xo style, she wrote


  • 25
    Melanie - May 06, 2011 @ 11:29 pm

    I’ve just found your website (love the multi-coloured piping technique!) and this post caught my eye. My son will be starting kindergarten in September, and even finding a spot in a public school has been an absolute nightmare. (Short version: public schools in our area are wildly oversubscribed, board changed the boundaries a few weeks after kindergarten applications were due, and now it looks like our son will be going to a non-existent school housed in a handful of portables unless his position on the waitlist for a French Immersion programme comes up in time.) My son too loves preschool, and all I hope is that kindergarten builds on that excitement and fosters his curiosity. I’m glad your son is now in a school you all love. I hope my child will get a place in a school we’ll all love, too!

    Great blog, I think I’ll be spending a lot of time reading it :-)


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