Perhaps the worst of all my newly vegan woes is the one where I can’t have normal pizza anymore. That is to say, can’t smother my pizzas in cheese anymore. I’ve spent an ungodly amount of time trying out various vegan cheeses, but have been thouroughly disappointed thus far. HOWEVER. I discovered a melty, delicious cheese (Violife for pizza) that’s perfect for pizzas and tastes so good I used up all of it for my one pizza. Ok, I may have eaten some as I was grating it. Either way, need to buy more of it and die happy and fat. Here’s my pizza recipe:
For the dough (makes two pizza bases):
300ish g strong bread flour
200ish ml of warm water
teaspoon of dry yeast (not essential if you’re not going to letthe dough rise)
1 tablespoon olive oil
Stir together flour and salt. Add yeast to warm water and mix until the yeast activates (you can see bubbles forming). Pour the water into a well in the flour and mix until a slightly wet dough forms. At this point I add a bit more flour to get it a bit more dry, then kneed it on a floured surface until it’s smooth (5-10 mins). At this stage you can cover with a tea towel and leave somewhere warm to rise for 30 mins to 1 hour, or go straight ahead and roll it out. I find it’s a bit more crispy if I let it rise, but otherwise the dough is delicious regardless. To roll it out, split the dough into two balls and roll out into rounds on a floured surface. The dough should be very thin and at least 25 cm in diameter to fit onto a baking sheet. If you want thicker dough, you obviously don’t need to makie it very thin, but it will rise in the oven so keep that in mind. Once the dough is rolled out, preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.
For the sauce:
100 ml passata (I added some protein powder to it)
a few chopped garlic cloves
handfull of chopped basil
Mix all the ingredients together, season to taste. I like to use the passata with basil already in it, as I love the taste. Put half the passata on one pizza, half on the other and bake in the oven for 5 mins. This gets rid of any excess moisture which can make the pizza soggy.
For all of the toppings:
180 g mixed mushrooms
200 g fresh baby spinach
Linda McCarthney’s fish free scampi (which I discovered later are not vegan)
assortment of other veg (I used sliced baby corn, baby courgettes and olives)
grated Violife for pizza cheese (I used the entire block of cheese, but you may wish to use less, because you have self control)
Fry all of the veg before putting it on the pizza to avoid too much moisture. Fry the veg until just slightly underdone, then scatter on the pizzas. Add the cheese and scampi, then bake for another 15-20 mins until the dough is crispy and the cheese melty.
Price per portion: £3
Protein per portion: 20 grams