Thursday, December 26, 2013

New Blog, New Cookbook! (And VEGAN WHITE PIZZA!)

I love pizza of all kinds, but white pizza truly has a special place in my heart.  Once we dedicated ourselves to being vegan--after being vegetarian for 13 years--I thought my white pizza days were over.  But then, OH!  Daiya cheese came along.  And then--Yippee!--I was out of almond milk one day when I was trying to make a simple white sauce and I substituted with a can of coconut milk.  Wonder of wonders, it was amazing.  And with those two miracles, white pizza became a part of my life once more. The combination of the creamy Alfredo sauce and the caramelized onion is a thing of beauty. This is just the most luscious pizza.  It can turn a frown upside down and make a bad day good.  My girls beg for this one!  

Being a vegan can be difficult sometimes, but pizza is EASY. If you’re having one of those days when being vegan feels hard, just do yourself a favor and make this.  The recipe has several steps, but it is simple and SO worth it.  This is truly vegan pizza nirvana!  And here's the real star of the show, an ingredient that is so beautiful and unctuous it makes me cry (sometimes literally):  Caramelized onions!

Stay tuned for a new cookbook from me, soon to be released as an e-book for the Kindle and the Nook.  It's called "Vegan Kids Unite" and it's filled with great ideas for feeding your vegan family and kids of all ages.  It should be up on the websites in a few days--keep watching!  Here's the recipe:  

White Pizza with Spinach, Caramelized Onions, and Mushrooms

1 pizza crust, preferably whole wheat
For the white sauce: (You will have sauce leftover for another pizza or to have the next day over pasta!)
1 Tbsp. non-hydrogenated margarine
1 can light coconut milk
1 or 2 cloves minced garlic
1 vegan “chicken” bouillon cube
1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
2 tsp. cornstarch, mixed with enough water to make a thin paste
Pinch nutmeg
1 or 2 onions, depending on size, sliced thinly (olive oil, pinch of salt, and 1/2 tsp. sugar needed for the onions)
Coupla handfuls fresh baby spinach
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
Shredded Mozzarella-style vegan cheese ( I prefer the Daiya brand)
1/3 cup sliced almonds
2 vegan  Italian sausages or bratwurst sausages (I prefer Tofurkey Brand), sliced thinly

  1. Saute the onions over medium heat in olive oil with a good pinch of salt, being careful not to let them burn.  Add just a tiny bit of water to the pan, if needed to keep things moist.  Turn the pan down on low, add the 1/2 teaspoon of sugar, and cook until the onions are soft and brown.  Set aside.
  2. Heat the coconut milk in a small pan with the minced garlic, bouillion cube, and 1 Tbsp. of non-hydrogenated margerine.  Bring to a simmer.
  3. Mix the cornstarch with a little water until smooth, add to the simmering mixture and stir with a whisk to thicken.  Remove from heat and add the nutmeg and nutritional yeast.  Taste and adjust salt and pepper to your liking.
  4. Spread the sauce on the pizza.  I like a good bit of sauce, but how much you put on the pizza is up to you.  Sprinkle the vegan cheese on top, spreading evenly.  I purposely left the amount of cheese off, because I know everyone likes varying levels of cheesiness.
  5. Add the toppings: the onions, spinach and mushrooms.  You can either put the mushrooms down raw or heat them in a pan with a little olive oil briefly beforehand.  I like to pre-cook them just for a minute.
  6. If adding the almonds, toast them briefly over medium heat in a dry skillet.  If adding the sausages, pre-brown them in a skillet.
  7. Sprinkle on just a tiny bit more cheese after you add the pizza toppings.
  8. Bake according to the crust’s package directions.  YUM.