Friday, June 23, 2006

Pizza Pizza!

The other night it was nearing dinner hour and I didn't know what to make for eats.

I had picked up a package of whole-wheat panini flat-bread at our grocery store a few days earlier, with the intention of making some pizzas.






I said to hubby recently "it really irks me that all the pizza crusts on the market here are white flour, or full of nasty ingredients". He replied "you get so worked up about food". Ahhh, true! But, then I also get so excited when I find things I like - such as the whole-wheat panini!

So off to making pizzas I went, follow me...

Here you see the pizzas before baking. Mine is on the top left, with pineapple. Hubby likes pineapple but it doesn't like him, so his is without but with red peppers on the top right (and another 1/2 the same on bottom right).

Then on the bottom left is a 1/2 panini for the kidlets. As you can see 1/2 of this 1/2 is generously covered with kalamata olives for our 5 year old (that one day will pickle herself with this affinity for olives and artichokes)!!!

Basically, I smeared just a touch of pasta sauce as the pizza base, then topped with pineapple, capers, olives, red peppers, pine nuts, chopped fresh sage, and very thinly sliced onion (with topping varied for each person, as mentioned). Then when out of the oven I drizzled on some chipotle grapeseed oil that I picked up a few months ago (I'd love to try some of those other flavors on their website - wow)!

These were delicioso!!! Perhaps I enjoyed them so much because they were so easy to make... but the combo of toppings with the drizzle of chipotle oil was so flavorful, and of course the fresh sage... well, fresh herbs can make something go from tasting pretty good to great!

Pizzas are fun, easy, super-tasty... make some, go on!!

28 comments:

OkraMary said...

Awesome! Fresh sage sounds so strong, but I'll have to try it. They're good looking pizzas too!

Megan the Vegan said...

Dreena! Wow, those pizzas look amazing. It so nice that you made personal pizzas for everyone. It reminded me of a birthday party I had as a kid where my mother made individual pizza shells for all the kids and we got to dress them as we pleased. The shells were so funny cause they were all mishaped with wholes in them etc. I can still remember them, and it has to be about 20 years ago! My mother...she's so creative...just like you are with your kids! I hope someday I'm able to impart fond memories like this on my kids!

jess (of Get Sconed!) said...

Chipotle Grapeseed oil - Intriguing, I'm going to look out for this, I want to at least try it. The pizzas are beautiful!

Quick - top two favorite toppings!

Mine are mushrooms and tomato slices.

raising_kahne said...

oh my goodness. I wish I could count how long it's been since Ive had pizza. I prefer not to eat out because you never know what all they put in the stuff(what kind of oils, preservatives, etc) and all the pizza crust Ive seen have crap in them! I wish I could find me some yummy thick pizza crust somewhere. lol And your delicious-looking pics do not help with my wanting some! : )

Freedom said...

I love the idea of square pizzas - these look cool! It sucks that pineapple doesn't agree with your husband, I couldn't live without it.

EatPeacePlease said...

These look wonderful Dreena. I like the photo with all the pizzas, toppings everywhere!
~Leslie~

Carrie™ said...

I got some Wildly Delicious infused oil for Christmas. It was the sun-dried tomato one. Sooooo good. We sell some of the bread dippers at the wine store, but I find them only so-so. I think they used canola oil and it would have been so much better if they'd used extra virgin olive. I like the idea of drizzling oil on top of the pizza. I'm so going to do that.
Quick - two favorite toppings!
Onions & sun-dried tomatoes.

Vicki said...

I love pizza & these look so yummy & pleasingly personalized!

Quick - two favorite toppings!
black olives & fresh tomatoes

Lisa said...

Hi Dreena,
Those pizza's look sooo yummy. But I also wanted to tell you that I was at a Board game party last night and brought a dozen of your classic chocolate chip cookies from Vive and people are still calling and emailing me to say how delicious they are so thank you for such a wonderful recipe. I have been vegan for a long time and have many, many cookbooks but those cookies really are the best.
By the way, I received Vive from my mom as a christmas gift and was excited to see that you reccommended the breastfeeding book she co-authored with Jack Newman. She was also quite thrilled.
Keep up the amazing blog!

shinyruby said...

dreena, i officially love you! :)

i'm on the biggest pizza 'thing' at the moment and this is just pefect timing!

woohoo! and how good do these look? x

Dreena said...

Hi okramary, thanks! I have some fresh sage growing in the garden, and usually I don't put it on pizzas - normally I'll go with fresh basil or thyme or oregano... but, I decided to chop up a couple of leaves, and it was great! Don't need much though, it is stronger tasting and so a little goes a long way.

Megan, that's such a lovely story. Amazing what memories really hold with us from childhood. Sounds like you have a special relationship with your mom... I don't know if I'm all that creative. My crafts and kids' parties are pretty basic and I am always in awe of my friends' skills in these areas!! Thank you though... :)

Thanks Jess, I had the oil sitting around for a couple of months, and now that I've started using it I'm putting it on pizzas, soups, wraps, etc! Quick - two favorite toppings - olives and grilled/roasted mushrooms (esp fancier mushrooms)!

Hi Savanna, I know, for as many pizza joints are there are even in our area, we have one place that we order a pizza from. It's much cheaper to make our own, and usually better too, but I would love a more 'gourmet' pizzeria that focused on healthful, well prepared toppings and crusts. Ah well!

Hi freedom, I love pineapple on pizzas, and we have been eating a lot of fresh pineapple in recent months, and fresh pineapple on pizza is SO flavorful, and a great contrast from the salty/savory toppings!!!

Thanks Leslie! It is very colorful, isn't it (even though there are onions on it - ewww for you!) I spared you the mushrooms... :)

Carrie, I haven't seen the sd tomato flavor, and after seeing the varieties on the website, I want to try some of those. What I love is that you get A LOT of flavor with just the smallest amount of oil drizzled on your food, it's fantastic!!

Thanks Vicki... and I'm with you on the olives!!

Hi Lisa... your mom co-authored with Jack Newman? Wow, that is so incredible! I am very big on breastfeeding, my youngest is 19 months and I am still breastfeeding her. My very dear friend that sometimes comments here was my Doula for my second pregnancy, too, and I have even more appreciation for breastfeeding after learning more from her. It's amazing that we've had to "come back" to breastfeeding after years of formula, and well not even that. I mean, I was fed Carnation milk and water. Amazing how resilient babies can be!! But, it's good to see more support again for breastfeeding, even though I know there is still more support and acceptance needed! Anyhow, it's just veeery cool to hear that about your mom. Thanks also for commenting about the cookies. That is such wonderful feedback for me to hear! Most people think vegan cookies are horrible, so I love to show them otherwise... thank you! :)

Well, thanks shinyruby for that enthusiastic note!! I'm glad to have peaked your interest and helped "feed" your pizza kick right now! :) Pizza goes with spring/summer for me - it's all the fabulous produce out there and ease of cooking in the warmer weather!

raising_kahne said...

Thanks! Also, I dont know if you know the answer to this, but I was wondering, what exactly is Maltodextrin, and is it considered safe health-wise?? Ive read about it and it says something about it coming from corn syrup, and that's something I dont like.

Anderson, Cherie said...

I like the big green onion garnishes. Beautiful and I bet they were tasty!

KleoPatra said...

Wow, Dreena, that is some pizza there. I wish "meat eaters" could see what's available... stuff like this would convert 'em to be sure! The more toppings the merrier, i say...

krispycheks said...

OMG, I need pizza now!

Dreena said...

Savanna, I don't know much about maltodextrin. My assumption is that it isn't "natural", and that while the odd thing with this in it probably wouldn't be harmful, you'd be better to choose products that have more natural ingredients. Sorry I don't know more... Leslie, if you are reading, do you know???

Thank you Cherie! :) I wanted to 'pretty them up' a little, since the green from the herbs turned greyish with the cooking!

Thanks Kleo - I agree. We had pizza again last night (a different kind), and I said to hubby "see how uninteresting our pizzas are without meat and cheese"... he said "will you give it a rest"!! Most times I say these things just to get a rise out of him - he's fully vegan, he just is amazed (or bored!) by how much I can talk vegan food talk!!

Hey krispycheks!! Well, then, go make some - or order one, quick! :)

EatPeacePlease said...

Dreena, wow, you remembered about the onions and mushrooms!

As for the maltodextrin, it is the sugar obtained by the hydrolysis of starch (starch + water + combining). Basically, it's the combo of maltol (a natural crystalline powder from trees roasted in malt. It can be synthetic too) and dextrin (starch gum) and they are combined to texturize and enhance flavors, mostly in baked items, processed items like candy and gum. It does have less calories than sucrose, but many people have allergic reactions to this and it's because of the maltol.

Does this help?

EatPeacePlease said...

Oh, and maltodextrin is considered safe by the USDA (if you consider everything they "pass" *safe*). The specific for that is GRAS.

krispycheks said...

Dreena, it's funny that you mention how your husband can't get over how much you can talk about food. My husband has been refurbishing two vintage bikes for us and he will go on and on about what he's doing to them and I just kind of glaze over. Last night I was talking about the baking I had planned for this morning for a potluck at Food Fight today and he just looked and me and said "wow, bikes are my cooking... You can talk on and on forever about something that sounds like such a chore to me and you love it, just like the bikes seem like such a bore to you..." Lol, it's true, I can talk forever about vegan food and I can't imagine wanting to spend days working on a bike!

raising_kahne said...

Thanks a ton Leslie! It did help me very much! It was in my favorite granola that Id been eating, and I stopped and actually read the ingredients since I hadnt in awhile, and it had that in it. So Im not going to eat it anymore! : ) Thanks again!

jenny said...

Those look SOOO good!!!

EatPeacePlease said...

You can eat the granola, I'd just find something (and you will) that is more natural. You don't *need* maltodextrin, and I wouldn't want it either, but I think 100% of the time it's vegan, just processed. Good choice for going more natural.

Dreena said...

Thanks, Leslie... how lucky are we to have a nutritionist willing to help on our blogs??!! :) I was just about to ask you if it is "healthy" or "safe", and then saw your second post. Still, I guess you think like I do that it isn't a natural substance, and so while eating something with maltodextrin in it occasionally is fine, you are best not to buy products with it if you are eating them on a fairly regularly basis?? Thank you for giving us your expertise Leslie, very helpful.

Yes, krispycheks, I think people that are enthused about good food wonder why everyone else isn't too??!! I can spend hours in a natural foods market (esp one that is new to me or I only rarely visit), and my poor hubby looks at me like "are we finished yet"??? But it's so much fun in there for me!!

Thanks Jenny!

Ok, that's too cool, Leslie - you just answered my last question again!! Thanks. :)

Isil S. said...

oh my, these pizzas just rock! You know, they use soy cheese on most of the recipes in most of the vegan pizza recipes and it's not available in Turkey. So I was hopeless to create a delicious vegan pizza until I saw yours. Thanks for the inspiration Dreena!

Dreena said...

Wow, thanks Isil!! You know, we usually prefer pizza without the vegan cheese. If the pizza has lots of flavorful toppings, seasonings, and things you like, the cheese just covers it up! Best to enjoy the tastes on their own and a drizzle of oil is always nice for us. Good luck with your pizza making. :)

domicile said...

Hey Dreena, I'm pretty sure you're here in Vancouver aren't you? Where did you get those "panini"? They look great, and I too share the same issue with premade crust and rarely have time to premake dough.

Dreena said...

Hi domicile, yes I am... I got the panini at PriceSmart (which is part of Save-On here). I suspect Save-On has them too. When I pick them up again I'll get the brand name and post it here for you!!

Harmonia said...

Those look heavenly!!!