Friday, June 22, 2012

Vegan Pizza!!!!!!!

Yes, I really used that many exclamation points. But it's Friday Night Pizza Time!!

I guess I didn't realize how much I'd missed pizza. I'm not like a pizza freak or anything, but pretty much everyone loves pizza, right? I realized the other day that it's been nearly a year since I've had a slice. I thought it was high time I changed that, and I'd been really wanting to try my hand at using a pizza stone. So all that led to pizza time!

I went lazy here: was going to make my own dough and my own marinara sauce, but after a long week, I didn't want to hang around waiting for dough to rise. Plus, one of my friends had clued me in on T. Joe's pre-made pizza dough. I checked out the ingredients and didn't see a ton of fake stuff, so figured it was ok to use in lieu of making my own dough this time. I got their whole wheat version, and it made for a yummy crust.

I also used T. Joe's marinara sauce- another shortcut with a really good flavor and result.

  • 1 package Trader Joe's whole wheat pizza dough (or make your own)
  • ~1 cup Trader Joe's pizza sauce (or make your own, such as this red sauce)
  • 1-2 cups Daiya mozzarella style shreds
  • Veggies of choice; I used 1 container shiitake mushrooms (washed and sliced) and 1 bunch of asparagus (lightly steamed- just undercooked - in a little garlic & olive oil)
  • Fresh herbs (I used rosemary on one side and basil on the other)
  • Pepper to taste
  • Cornmeal for sprinkling on pizza stone
  1. Follow instructions for dough (if using pre-made, you need to let it rest for about 20 min). Then spread on floured surface and roll out. 
  2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  3. If using a pizza stone, lightly sprinkle with cornmeal to avoid sticking; if using a baking pan, lightly oil. Stretch your dough over your cooking surface.
  4. Spread on enough pizza sauce to cover dough, leaving a little unsauced for your crusts. If desired, press in some rosemary to the crust.
  5. *Lightly* steam any veggies using (ie, under cook them a bit). 
  6. Sprinkle on some Daiya mozzarella shreds, lightly covering. Add on a ton of veggies, and add a little fresh ground pepper. Finish off with some more of the Daiya shreds.
  7. Cook for about 20 minutes and cool for about 2 minutes before slicing. Sprinkle with fresh sliced basil if desired.

I must admit, I was reeeaaaaaaallly skeptical of the Daiya shreds. I've had the cheddar before, and thought it was gross straight out of the package; it wasn't much better melted and certainly didn't make my vegan quesadilla very good. I didn't even try the mozzarella uncooked; I don't have very high hopes for vegan cheeses tasting just like an aged Vermont cheddar or anything. But let me tell you, melted, and on this pizza, the Daiya mozzarella was awesome. I felt like I was eating amazing yummy cheesey pizza. With tons of fresh veggies and herbs.

Cannot wait to do this at a dinner party. Plus, I saw these mini pizza stones and thought- how much fun would it be to do little mini pizzas with different herbs and veggies for guests or kids?

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