There are very few things everyone agrees on. A casual perusal of your Facebook wall ought to make that evident. But one of those rare nouns that can bring us all together in agreement — think Pepsi lovers and cat ladies joining hands with Coca-Cola worshipers and dog people — is pizza. Thanks, Italy!
Pizza is marvelous and simple and brings a smile to peoples’ faces from Japan to Africa to Uncle Sam’s Land.
Of course, there are tons of ways to doctor yourself up a plant-based pie. But this gem is a little non-traditional, using (to die for) cashew alfredo sauce instead of the traditional red, as well as bright and beautiful — and crazy good for you — kale and summer squash, as well as baby bella mushrooms.
Fun facts time. Did you know that mushrooms are the only plant source of vitamin D? And did you also know that summer squash is a rich source of Vitamin A and C, plus magnesium, fiber, folate, riboflavin, phosphorus, potassium and Vitamin B6? Aaaaand did you know that kale is a demi god? Okay, well not quite, but it can do some amazing stuff for your body.
Alls I’m saying is, this pizza not only tastes faboosh, it’s also good for you. You could amp up the nutrition level by cutting the vegan cheese and using a whole wheat crust, but I chose to go the regular, unbleached white flour route this time, and sprinkle on some Daiya.
FYI, the sauce is also amazing on pasta. Nomnomnom. And it’ll keep in the fridge, covered in an airtight container, for a few days. You can also freeze it for months.
- 1 prepared pizza crust (my favorite recipe from Veggieful.com)
- A handful of baby bella mushrooms (or any kind you like), washed and sliced
- One summer squash, sliced into bite-size pieces
- A big handful of kale, ripped into bite-size pieces
- 1/4 cup vegan mozzarella, if you like
- 1/2 cup cashew cream (recipe below)
- A splash of grapeseed oil or olive oil (about a tablespoon)
- A tsp of lemon juice or so (to taste)
- Garlic powder, to taste
- Sea salt, to taste
- Black pepper, to taste
- Dried parsley flakes, to taste
- 2 Tbsps corn meal
As you can see from the ingredient list, I really eyeball this sauce. I didn’t use any measuring cups, but just mixed as I went and kept taste testing. If you think you’d like some other herbs, throw ‘em in! Want more pepper? You add that pepper, gal or guy! But here’s the gist:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Roll out your dough onto your pie pan, and lift up the edges to sprinkle the corn meal underneath. I also sprinkle a little bit on the top, too.
- To make your alfredo sauce, mix together your 1/2 cup of cashew cream and the oil, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, pepper and parsley, taste testing as you go, until you have a sauce you like. Then spread it out over your dough.
- Top with the sliced veggies, and cheese if you like, and bake for 30 minutes, until the crusts are browned.
Cashew Cream Recipe
- 1 cup raw, whole cashews
- 1/4 cup cold water
- Soak your cashews in cold water for six to eight hours, then strain them.
- Place the strained cashews in a food process with 1/4 cup of cold water, and blend, blend, blend some more, until it’s smooth as silk — no bits left. If you want your cream to be thinner, just add a bit more water.
That’s it! This will make you a whole cup, but you can store what’s leftover from the alfredo sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer. It makes for a very tasty dill dip for veggies, or salad dressing, too. Just add lemon juice, grapeseed oil, parlsey, a bit of salt and lots of dill.