Friday, 22 June 2012
Foodie Friday - Vegan Pizza
A friend, who shall remain anonymous, but his name is Roger, said that vegan pizza is tomato on a lettuce leaf.
Today's blog is dedicated to him.
In an attempt to keep the peace around my house, I try to make my vegan meals as appealing as possible to my extremely handsome, intelligent, hilarious and supportive husband who shall remain nameless, but he has been called, from time to time, Brian Flay.
Other than the millet patties, he's given everything his seal of approval, which looks something like this:
At risk of even further destroying my attempts to drop a few pounds, I decided that it would be a good idea to make pizza.
I love pizza. Same as most of the sentient world.
I actually love pizza crust the most. If you don't like the crusts, I will eat yours for you, ok? I used to get upset when Brian fed his crusts to the dogs. WTF! He made it very clear the pecking order of love in our household.
Homemade pizza is not a big deal, especially if you buy your dough pre made, or even use a pre made crust. I make mine from scratch because I find it quite satisfying and I prefer to control what goes into the dough when I can, which is not always possible for many folks.
I make my dough in my food processor, using the recipe that came with the machine. I bought my Cuisinart 19 years ago while we were recording God Shuffled His Feet. We were in Lake Geneva Wisconsin, and I figured I'd NEVER be able to find a Cuisinart in Canada, so bought it there and had it shipped back to Canada. Ended up paying about $150 more than I would have if I could have just bloody waited to get back to Winnipeg. Idiot.
Anyway, the recipe has never failed for me.
Cuisinart Pizza Dough
preheat oven to 425 degrees
2/3 C warm water
1 tsp sugar (I used agave nectar)
1 package yeast
Dissolve yeast in water/sugar mixture and let stand until foamy - about 10 minutes. If there's no action, your yeast is probably no good, so you need to start again with a good packet.
1 and 2/3 C flour and 2 tsp salt
- put in the bowl of your food processor with the metal blade attached.
With machine running, pour yeast mixture into bowl through the feed tube. Let run about 45 seconds until dough ball forms and no longer sticks to the side of the bowl.
1 T olive oil
Add olive oil through feed tube and process a further 60 seconds. If dough is too sticky you can add more flour, a Table spoon at a time, til nice, smooth dough ball forms and isn't sticking to the side of the bowl.
Pop dough out onto floured surface and roll to 16-18 inches in diameter
Bake on a cornmeal sprinkled pizza stone or lightly oiled pizza pan for 6 minutes at 425 degrees.
Now comes the easy part. Just put whatever you want on the pizza crust. Of course you want to make sure there are no animal products, otherwise the pizza will burn and something very bad will happen to someone somewhere - and you don't want that responsibility, do you?
So you got your pizza sauce (home made or store bought as you prefer), peppers, chopped shallots, mushrooms (Brian says no to mushrooms), spinach, basil, vegan cheese (I used Daiya), herbs and there you go.
Or go all crazy with roasted beets, shredded kale, chickpeas, hummus, onions, thinly sliced zucchini, etc.
Sprinkle nutritional yeast on top for extra protein and vitamin B12 rock and roll action.
I put basil and raw spinach in the food processor to shred it all up and sprinkled it, willy nilly, on the crust.
Pop it all back into the oven for about 18-20 minutes.
Serve to delighted folks.
I won't pretend that vegan pizza is like pizza topped with cow's milk cheese. It's not the same. It doesn't have that ooey gooey-ness and grease factor that makes dairy topped pizza so decadent. No, vegan pizza is a little more reserved, but is less likely to clog your arteries.
Now that's something to bite into!