A day in the life of an animal-loving foodie

Pizza Night

on December 28, 2011

Living with an omnivore isn’t always easy…especially when we make meals that have to be 1/2 vegan, 1/2 not.  Pizza is one of those times when we have to get creative!  We have found a happy in-between by making our own.  Pizza crust is a breeze to make, and already vegan.

Pizza Crust

4 cups flour (I like wheat, he likes white, so we do 2 cups of each and mix it)

1 1/2 cups warm water (not hot!)

1 T active dry yeast

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

salt and seasoning to taste

You test the yeast by adding it to the warm water and letting it sit for a few minutes.  It should get kinda bubbly/frothy if its good.  If not, start over with new yeast, or live with the fact that the dough won’t rise…I’ve done both.  Then you mix it all together into a big dough ball, and set aside for a while to let it rise.  I can’t usually wait more than an hour.  Then you just spread it out in your pan (cast iron is GREAT for making Chicago Style Deep Dish!) or onto your stone and add toppings.

We usually use a plain old tomato paste and add our own salt/garlic/oregano, but pizza sauce is easy to find everywhere too.  I love to put fresh baby spinach on my side and sprinkle with some sea salt.  We both love onions and peppers, and I’ll also add fresh minced garlic and mushroom to my side.  We used some red bell pepper to “cut” our pizza in half so his ham/sausage/or pepperoni doesn’t touch my side.  CHEESE is very important!  The cheese will make or break your pizza.  A lot of vegans like Daiya, I don’t for this at least…I think it has a funny aftertaste.  What I’ve found that tastes great and melts perfectly is a brand called Follow Your Heart.  It only comes in blocks at my local Sprouts store, but it’s easy enough to grate into shreds.  I even accidentally used a Monterey Jack one instead of Mozzarella and it was still good!  Bacon bits are a great way to keep meat-eaters happy, and they’re usually vegan.  Yep, no bacon is actually in Bacon Bits…it’s a soy product with liquid smoke.  Liquid smoke is awesome…it always gives the impression of meat when there is none.  Perfect for this Barbeque state!  I don’t use them all that often, I prefer less processed food (says the person using fake cheese) but every once in a while never hurt anybody.

The Pizza goes into an oven at 500 F  for16 minutes, turning it 8 minutes in.  It comes out crispy and delish!

BTW this is WAYYYY cheaper than ordering out or even frozen pizza, and you can see it’s big enough to take up half my stove.  There are always leftovers…so for vegans on the cheap, like, me, it’s a good “Once a Week” traditon.  🙂

TTFN:  Back to filling out applications and sending out resumes…So far I’ve set up an interview with an animal-rights group, a test for an animal-control officer position, and gotten good feedback from an animal sanctuary.  Wish me luck!

5 responses to “Pizza Night

  1. Yum, pizza. Transitioning to veganism is something that is difficult for me because I share my space with an omnivore, too. (He actually doesn’t live with me but he’s here so often that it feels like he does.) We recently had a discussion about my cooking and it literally NEVER occurred to me how difficult it must be for him when he eats over and I have no meat. It’s so normalized for me to not eat meat that it didn’t even cross my mind how starving he must be for his familiar sources of protein. Cooking meals that appease both of us is definitely on my to-do list if I do make the full switch to veganism. He’s not a huge veggie lover and something tells me that if I start roasting beets and squash, he’s not gonna be too thrilled! I’ll have to keep reading to see how you address the “omnivore’s dilemma”!

    • I understand that, my fiancee was very supportive of me becoming a vegan…at first! Then we moved in together and life got a little more difficult 😉 Normally, he’s good with meatless meals if there’s something very meaty in it. I can make fried seitan that he would swear was KFC! Its also really easy to make “veggie crumbles” which act just like ground beef for tacos, Italian dishes, etc. If I don’t have something “meaty” in a meal, he’s free to add his own. I don’t mind if he keeps his meat in the fridge if its separate and well-wrapped. He has to make it in a separate pan and add it in on his plate, so he doesn’t compromise the leftovers. I usually have to go sit on the balcony while meat is cooking, because the smell physically bothers me now. I’ve never had that happen in a restaurant, but little apartment=large concentration of nasty smell. Still, that bothers him, so he doesn’t do it very often. What IS fun is how I can add ingredients into a meal that he’s never had before. Slowly, but surely, he starts to find new things that he likes. One of his issues is how he loves to pour barbeque or ketchup all over everything. The store-bought kinds often have high-fructose corn syrup or other nasty things in them, so I made home-made barbeque one night. He loved it so much, he makes his own all the time now! He experiments with different flavors, and it really gets him involved in the meal, which makes him more likely to want to eat it. It’s a work in progress, but that’s love, right?

      • This is all SUPER helpful. James doesn’t mind “fake” meats much–he actually LOVES Morningstar products. But they’re not vegan (at least I don’t think most of them are–maybe they do carry a few vegan products) so I have to start looking for something else. We both aren’t big boca fans. I’ve been hearing a lot about Gardein products. I try to steer away from the super processed stuff, but frozen faux-meat products are nice to have on hand for busy days/summer BBQs.

  2. Oooh, also. I’ve been meaning to try seitan. I google-imaged it one day and some of it looked extremely unappetizing. I should look up some recipes.

  3. I agree about the processed “meats”; I stay away from MorningStar and the only Boca I like at all is their chikn patties. I usually keep a box in the freezer in case of emergencies. Occasionally during the summer I like a SmartDog tofu hotdog or a tofu brat, but I don’t buy gardein or fake lunch meats. Its really too expensive, and it doesn’t blow my mind. I did once make the gardein chik’n tenders for my fiancee to go with a meal, and he liked them, but the cost doesn’t usually justify it. I can usually make a whole meal for the $5 one bag would cost. TVP is another soy product that is high in protein, but not to be used all the time as it’s highly processed. You can find it in the bulk section, and it’s really simple to use and acts like ground beef. Perfect for tacos. It comes dried and you just add boiling water or broth. Its used in a lot of vegan recipes for things like meatless loaf or sloppy joes. I’ll put up a burger recipe that’s really “meaty” that most guys like…

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