Sunday, April 11, 2010

Daiya Pizza

Oh, Daiya.  Ooooh, Daiya (to the tune of that beautiful oldie "Oh Donna").  Natural Pantry now has TWO flavors of daiya cheese:  yellow and white- I mean, cheddar and Italian.  We got a container of each and mixed them into a beautiful pizza cheese.  Daiya cheese rocks my socks off with it's yum yum delight melty goodness and flavor to boot!  My poor husband wants to eat it every night, I can tell.

We made a classic combo pizza.

1 cup warm water
1 Tbsp sugar
1 package yeast
3 cups unbleached white flour
1/4 cup oil
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp corn meal (optional)

In stand mixer, dissolve the sugar into the water using a spoon or whisk (don't bother turning on the mixer for this part).  Once the sugar is dissolved, add the package of yeast and stir until combined.  Leave the yeast to sit and eat some sugar for a few minutes.  You could use this time to begin your pizza sauce.  The yeasty water should get foamy.  If it hasn't become foamy at all after 3-5 minutes, your yeast is bad and you'll have to restart.  I've never had this happen, but anything is possible.  Once you have the foam, put on your dough hook attachment of your mixer and add your flour, salt, and half the oil.  Mix on low until the flour is mostly mixed it, then move up to medium speed (if you go straight to medium, you'll end up covered in flour).  Continue to mix until the dough becomes a ball that pulls away from the sides of the bowl and has an elastic texture.  Remove the dough hook and add the rest of your oil to your ball and roll it around.   Cover with a damp cloth and leave in a warm place for about 45 minutes to an hour.  It should double in size.  Replace the dough hook and mix for about a minute.  Now you are ready to stretch your dough and spread it out on a cookie sheet sprinkled with corn meal.  Once you top your pizza, you'll cook it in a 400 degree oven for 15-20 minutes.

Pizza Sauce:
1 14.5/15oz can tomatoes (stewed, diced, whatever)
2 cloves garlic chopped
1-2 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp olive oil

In a pot over medium heat, saute garlic and olive oil until it just barely starts to brown.  Add the canned tomatoes and seasoning.  I like to over season my pizza sauce, and even if I were to use a jarred pasta sauce I would add extra herbs.  Bring this mixture to a boil and continue to stir.  Once it's boiling, reduce to a simmer and you should be ready to go back to your dough.  Let simmer for 10-20 minutes and then use an immersion blender if you have on to puree it.  If you don't have an immersion blender, then let the mixture cool a bit before putting it in your blender or food processor (if it's too hot, you're asking for an explosion).

Toppings (any):
3 medium mushrooms thinly sliced
1/4 of a yellow onion thinly sliced and then separated into strands
1/4 cup black olives cut in half lengthways
1/2 of a small red bell pepper
1 clove garlic minced finely
1 Field Roast Italian Sausage
1/2 lb shredded daiya cheese

Stretch the dough out onto the cookie sheet and then set the oven to preheat and chop all your toppings.  This will give the dough a chance to rise just a bit more.  Spread the sauce up to about 1/2 inch from your edges or even a little closer.  Sprinkle cheese over the entire pizza then place toppings all around.  Try not to overlap your veggies or they will end up with a steamed texture instead of roasted.  I like to sprinkle more Italian Seasoning over the top and drizzle with a bit of olive oil, but it's not necessary.  Cook for about 15 minutes, then check.  It should get nice and golden around the edges.   This dough makes a soft and chewy crust with a crispy exterior.

1 comment:

  1. Right after you posted this, I read someone reviewing a restaurant in Sacramento that makes pizza with this "cheese". They were raving just like you. I'll have to remember who it was, so I can remember the restaurant. Sacramento also just recently opened their first strickly vegan restaurant and bakery!