Tasty Mind Morsels

Nibbles and Bits for your Mind/Body/Soul Palate

September 26, 2011 October 12, 2011

Three things I am thankful for:

1.) Daiya vegan cheese.

It melts perfectly…and tastes even more delicious than actual cheese (IMO).  Enjoy this delicious, vegan pizza recipe!

Ingredients:

– 1, large, pre-made vegan-friendly pizza crust: I have found some at Whole Foods and Erewhon. I am not a fan of the alternative-to-flour pizza crusts and do not know why many vegans insist on fixing what isn’t broken 😉 You can also make your own if you have this prowess. Whatever floats your boat…just make sure it is about 12″ in diameter.

– 1 cup of Daiya Vegan Mozzarella Style cheese (or more, if you like a seriously cheesy pizza – like Me!)

– 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced, rings separated and halved

– 1 large Portobello mushroom, sliced to 1/2″ thickness

– have a bottle of olive oil and low-sodium soy sauce, and garlic (either minced or powdered) on hand

– 1/2 cup of homemade or pre-made marinara sauce (you can also just use olive oil and Italian Seasoning or Pesto if you’re feeling fancy)

– a few baby tomatoes, quartered, if you want a little extra tomato goodness

Directions:

– Pre-heat oven to  about 400 degrees (I actually have not made this an exact science…I really just eye my food because I’m a bit of a perfectionist…some pizza purists say to pre-heat oven to about 500 degrees about 20 min’s before you pop the pie in the oven.) I do not think this is a necessary temperature if you are just putting a pre-made crust in the oven.

– On medium heat, saute the Portobello mushroom slices in a large pan for about 15 minutes  in about 1/4 cup of olive oil (Portobello mushrooms are like sponges, they soak up EVERYTHING…fast), about 5 tablespoons of soy sauce (although, often I add more of both ingredients if the pan starts drying up before 15 minutes is up) and garlic to taste (some people like more, some less…it just depends on your personal taste).  You really want to saute them until the o.o./s.s. mixture causes the mushrooms to… caramelize…in a sense.  If you take the mushrooms out too fast, they will be incredibly salty…if you leave them in too long, they will burn. Use your best judgement and taste periodically while you cook them. If they taste like soy sauce, cook for a little longer. * Note * A Sicilian taught me this process…in a very haphazard, in-my-ma’s-kitchen sorta way. A lot of it is keeping an eye on your food. but the reward is GREAT.

– put your pizza crust on a cookie sheet or a round pizza pan. Take about 2 tablespoons of marinara sauce or your olive oil and herb mixture and place in the middle of the pizza. In a clockwise (or counter-clockwise, if you want to be different) fashion, spread the sauce from the middle to about 3/4″ from the edge of the pizza.

– Spread the red onion over this.

– THEN sprinkle the Daiya cheese on top.   This helps to prevent burning the onion.

– Arrange the quartered baby tomatoes and Portobello mushrooms in a fancy pattern (or in no pattern whatsoever) on top of the cheese.

– Pop that baby in the oven for around 10-15 mins but keep your eye on it! When the bottom of the pizza starts to turn a golden brown, you want to stop cooking. Sometimes the Daiya cheese will not look melted, but it will still be delightfully gooey. The key is to not burn the pizza or the cheese.

Enjoy your pizza! MMMMMMMMM…

2.) The hilarious, angry squirrel that lives outside of my window that wakes me up every Sunday morning:

Every Sunday morning (impeccable timing for a rodent), a squirrel that I believe to be the toughest squirrel on the block wakes me up with this. Our apartment complex harbors about 9 cats (in 8 units) that get to enjoy a lovely, gated courtyard from time to time. Sundays are the BIG DAY for most of them to have outside time…so the one squirrel that lives in our vicinity has to deal with them…hungrily stalking and cat-calling. I cannot hear the cats…but the squirrel lives right outside of our bedroom window. Even though I know it is expressing stress/anger – I cannot help but smile at my unique alarm clock on this one, particular day. 🙂

3.) Good teeth.

They are fine to look at. They are fine to have.

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