Just because you’re vegan doesn’t mean that you can’t have some kick-ass pizza! Especially if you’re using Daiya cheese, which I’ve found is THE BEST alternative to cheese because it actually melts and tastes awesome. Here’s how I made my pizza:
1 1/2 packets of Active Dry Yeast
1 tbsp fine grain sugar
2 cups hot water
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tbsp sea salt
First you want to “proof” your yeast, which basically means you’re testing it to make sure its still good. Add 1 tbsp of sugar to the 2 cups of hot water (about 100 degrees or so) then add in the active dry yeast. Stir to combine. After sitting for a while, the mixture should bubble and foam a bit at the surface….which means you’re good to go! If not, you need to buy more yeast.
In the bowl of a standing mixture (using the hook attachment) combine the flour and salt. Mix on low speed, slowing adding in the yeast mixture until well incorporated. Remove the dough. On a lightly floured surface, knead the dough until it is no longer sticky (about 8-10 minutes.) Lightly grease a large bowl with soy butter then place the ball of dough inside. Rub a little bit of the soy butter on the top of the dough as well. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and place in a warm area for about 2 hours. Meanwhile, make your marinara sauce:
1/4 cup safflower oil
1 large white onion, roughly chopped
4-5 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 (28-ounce) and 1 (14.5-ounce) can of organic diced tomatoes (32.5 ounces total)
1/3 cup basil leaves, chopped
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
1/4 tsp dried chile flakes
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add onions and cook until translucent (about 10 minutes.) Add garlic and cook for another 5 minutes. Add in dried spices. Cook for another 2-3 minutes. Add tomatoes and basil. Stir to combine, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook for 45 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Using a hand held emersion blender, pulse the mixture until it resembles a sauce. You can also do this in a blender or food processor, but you may have to do it in 2 batches. Taste to make sure the seasoning is right and adjust as needed.
Punch down the dough in the bowl, then turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into desired amounts and use a rolling pin to roll it out to about 1/4 inch thick.
Cover dough with Homemade Marinara Sauce (recipe above.) Sprinkle with daiya cheese. Use whatever toppings you like! I prefer artichoke hearts, spinach, mushrooms, garlic and Roma tomatoes. My husband also likes to add some seitan (chopped into small pieces) to add a bit of protein.
Drizzle with a bit of extra virgin olive oil and bake at 400 degrees for about 20-30 minutes (until the crust is golden brown.) I use a pizza stone, which works great! If you don’t have one, you can either place the pizza on a baking sheet or a piece of aluminum foil with the edges turned up. Remove the pizza from the oven, sprinkle with freshly chopped basil.