Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Spinach, Caramelized Onion, and 'Bacon' Pizza

This pizza is entirely homemade, from the crust, to the sauce, to the topping!

To make the dough, lightly spoon 1/2 cup bread flour into a measuring cup, and level with a knife. Combine the flour in a bowl with 1 cup warm water (check with a thermometer to make sure the temperature is between 100 and 110 degrees), 1 teaspoon raw sugar, and 1 package yeast (about 2 and 1/4 teaspoons); stir with a whisk, then let stand for 15 minutes.
Lightly spoon 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour and another 1/2 cup bread flour into measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine the flours in a large bowl with 1/2 tsp. salt. Make a well in the center of the mixture, and add the yeast mixture; stir until you have a dough.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes - to knead, punch the dough flat with the heel of your palm, fold it in half on itself, turn it a quarter turn, then repeat the process! Add up to 1/4 cup more all-purpose flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to your hands - you still want to the dough to be tacky though, so don't overdo it on the flour. I only used about another tablespoon.

Place the dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning so the top of the dough is coated as well, then cover, and let rise for 45 minutes. A great place to let dough rise is in an unheated oven, since that will come close to the ideal rising environment - about 85 degrees and free from drafts.

While the dough rises, prepare t he topping: chop 4 vegan bacon slices (such as Light Life) into pieces, and cook in a skillet coated with cooking spray over medium heat for about 4 minutes, until crisp. Remove the bacon from the pan and set aside.

Add one 10-ounce package of fresh spinach to the skillet (although mine was actually a 9-ounce package); cook until the spinach wilts - about 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a colander and squeeze out the liquid until the spinach is just barely moist; set aside.

Re-coat the skillet with cooking spray, and add 2 cups sliced onion and 2 teaspoons raw sugar; cook for 12 minutes - the onions should be nicely golden brown. Remove from heat and let cool.
When the dough is done rising, punch it down, then cover and let rest for 20 minutes.

While the dough rests, make the sauce: melt 1 tablespoon vegan butter (such as Earth Balance) in a saucepan over medium heat. Add 2 minced garlic cloves and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour and 1/2 tsp. black pepper; cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly with a whisk. Gradually pour in 1 cup plain soy milk (such as Silk), and cook for 5 minutes, whisking constantly. The mixture will be nice and thick by the end.

Coat a 12-inch pizza pan or baking sheet with cooking spray, and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon cornmeal; set aside.

Roll the dough out into a 12-inch circle on a floured surface. Transfer to the prepared pan (note: it helps to roll the dough up around the rolling pin, while transferring, so it doesn't fold over onto itself).

Crimp the edges of the crust with your fingers to make a rim, then spread the sauce evenly over the crust. Top evenly with the spinach and the onions.

Bake at 475 degrees for about 20 minutes - I pulled mine from the oven at 17 minutes though, because the onions were starting to singe a bit! Over the top, sprinkle the 'bacon' pieces and 1 cup shredded vegan cheese in place of Parmesan (such as the rice vegan mozzarella from Galaxy Foods). Return to the oven for a final 5 minutes.

Slice into 8 wedges. 2 wedges make a yummy supper of 530 calories.

vegan sugar $4.99
vegan bacon $3.39
fresh spinach $2.99
onion $1.81
vegan cheese $4.99

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The Vegan Pantry

  • Vegan yogurt - Whole Soy
  • Vegan milk - Silk
  • Vegan Feta - Sunergia
  • Vegan Cheese - Galaxy Foods
  • Vegan Eggs - Ener-G
  • Vegan Butter - Earth Balance