No, vegans, you do not have to give up pizza. Your more socially conscious / healthy / kinder choice doesn’t include dairy but it does include pizza so good that you’ll be snacking along, only to find in the morning that you did, in fact, eat an entire pizza all by yourself. And you’re not ashamed. Because it was so good you’d do it again just to prove a point.
Jon and I make quite a lot of varieties of vegan pizza; so much in fact that we’ve toyed with the idea of opening a vegan gourmet pizza parlor named “Vizza”, where only the best wine would be paired with gourmet pizza strips, and we wouldn’t even need to advertise it as vegan because we’d be so pretentious and smug about the restaurant identity design and ingredients that hipsters would line up outside our door for blocks on end.
Anyway. This is one of many vegan pizza recipes I plan to post, the vegan take on a Hawaiian pizza (we’re headed to Hawaii in a week or so, so my brain is kind of focused on that right now). Note: we usually use yeast in the dough, but forgot to add it this time. It turned out great anyway, so don’t worry if your brain is mush at the end of the day and you totally space on that. Just smile and act like it was all part of your Master Plan and no one will know.
Grapeseed or Safflower oil as needed
Homemade bread dough (we use the recipe from our bread machine, and mix it in it)
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 small can tomato paste
a handful of pineapple chunks
1/3 package of Yves Vegan Canadian Bacon, cut into 1/2″ squares
2 handfuls of maitake mushrooms, chopped
2 small (or one large) red onions, peeled and sliced into half-moon strips
Olive oil as needed
a large pinch of fresh, chopped cilantro (feel free to omit if you think it tastes like soap)
shredded daiya mozzerella cheese OR shredded “Sheese” mozzerella cheese
1. Preheat your oven to 350. Oil your pizza stone (I don’t know how to make pizza without one of these. They’re a great investment. Get one.) with a high-heat oil like grapeseed oil or safflower oil. NOT olive oil, as it will burn in the oven and ruin the taste of your pizza.
2. Carmelize the red onions by cooking them in a sauce pan with olive oil. Start off on medium heat, then lower the heat to medium / low and let them cook until they turn a yummy brown slightly-crispety color. Set aside.
3. Saute the mushrooms and Yves Canadian Bacon in that same pan until the bacon is browned a bit and the mushrooms get soft. Set aside.
4. In a medium bowl, mix together the tomatoes and tomato paste.
5. Roll out your dough onto a pizza stone. I like square pizzas, but I’m weird that way. Spread with a spoon the tomato sauce mixture onto the dough. Make sure to only spread it thinly – too much sauce and the dough will get super soggy. Sprinkle on top the mushrooms, onions and canadian bacon. Grate the cheese (or sprinkle it if it’s already grated) on the pizza. The trick with vegan cheese is don’t use too much. You should be able to see the toppings a bit. Top with a few pineapple chunks – again, not too many or it’ll make the center of the pizza soggy. Top with a bit of cilantro, if you like that.
6. Bake the pizza for around 15 – 25 minutes. You’ll have to watch it and pay attention – when the edges of the dough are no longer soft and it has a slight brown texture (or if the cheese is starting to brown), take it out. Let it cool for a few minutes and eat it. But not the whole thing. I’ve made that mistake too many times…and probably will again.