Sunday, June 20, 2010

Grilled Pizza with Smoked Tofu and Roasted Red Peppers

This slightly complicated recipe makes for great weekend backyard (or city stovetop!) grilling. I highly recommend having a glass of vegan rose wine in hand while you work.

To make the pizza dough, start by dissolving 1 teaspoon raw sugar and 1 package yeast (about 2 and 1/4 teaspoons) into 1 cup warm water - check with a thermometer that the temperature is between 100 and 110 degrees. Let stand for 5 minutes.

Lightly spoon 2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour into measuring cups and level with a knife. Add the flour to the yeast mixture, along with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt, stirring until a dough forms.

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes, adding up to 1/4 cup more flour as necessary to keep the dough from sticking to your hands. I found that this was a particularly sticky dough, so needed just about all the extra flour! To knead, simple press the dough flat with the palm of your hands, fold the dough over on itself, turn it a 1/4-turn on the work surface, then repeat!

Place the dough in a bowl coated with cooking spray, turning so the top of the dough is coated as well, then cover and let rise for 45 minutes - ideally you want some place about 85 degrees and free from drafts (like a closed, unheated oven!)

While the dough rises, make the sauce: heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 minced garlic clove and saute for 1 minute. Add 1 (28-ounce) undrained can of plum tomatoes; bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes - the sauce should be thick by the end. Break up the plum tomatoes as they simmer, too, using the back of your cooking spoon. Add 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. black pepper at the end of simmering, then set aside.

Meanwhile, cut 2 red bell peppers in half and discard the seeds and membranes. Press the pepper halves flat with your palm, then grill (either outdoors or on a stovetop grill pan coated with cooking spray) skin-sides down, until blackened. Place in a zip-top plastic bag and let stand for 15 minutes, then peel and cut into strips.

Once the dough has risen, punch it down and let rest for 5 minutes.

Divide the dough into 6 equal portions, and roll each into a 6-inch circle. Place the dough rounds on two baking sheets coated with cooking spray, lightly coat the tops of the dough with cooking spray, then cover with plastic wrap; let stand for 15 minutes.

It's best to prep the rest of the toppings here, since things will move fast in the next step! Shred 2 cups worth of smoked tofu (such as SoyBoy) and 1 and 1/2 cups of vegan mozzarella (I definitely recommend the one from Vegan Gourmet, since it most closely resembles "fresh" buffalo mozzarella). Set the toppings aside. (Note: I crumbled my smoked tofu rather than shredding it; if there is a pre-shredded smoked tofu on the market, I could not find it, but I'd be curious to hear if anyone knows of a brand!)

To grill, place the dough rounds on the grill rack for 2 minutes. I found it slightly difficult to keep them in perfect circles during the transfer process, but rather liked the uneven edges and individual feel to each pizza that resulted!

Turn the dough over and spread 1/3 cup tomato sauce on each dough round, leaving about a 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle each with 1/3 cup of the smoked tofu, 1/4 cup of the 'mozzarella', and about 1/3 cup of the bell pepper strips. Close the grill lid (or, if using a grill pan, cover with foil) and cook for a final 2 minutes.

These little pizzas are best served immediately. 1 pizza is 430 calories.

yeast packets $2.69
garlic $0.72
canned plum tomatoes $3.39
red bell peppers $4.55
smoked tofu $2.79
vegan mozzarella $4.39

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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