Pizza pie in your eye

28 Dec

No animals required for this yum-o-rama.

No animals required for this yum-o-rama.

Oh my lawd, I loves me a pizza. Don’t let the other kids tell you you can’t eat pizza anymore if you don’t consume animal bits. Untrue. Observe…

The story behind my above prize pizza pie begins with a happy accident and my own inability to play by the rules…

The pie crust dough is super savory thanks to my fabulous co-worker, Eneris, screwing up a quiche she made for my birthday. The crust called for a tub of regular Tofutti cream cheese, but she grabbed the herbs and chive version on accident — and a star was born.

And now on to my inability to follow instructions.

I recently got on a calzone kick. The only problem is I can’t quite stop myself from piling on the ingredients, and then my calzones explode and, while they are tasty, they don’t look very pretty.

Calzone explosion

Did you know calzone is Italian for “a tasty mess?” True story.

So, one day I said to myself, “Self, screw this calzone business. Tonight we create a pizza pie.”

I hopped on Google for a recommended baking temperature and time and this caught my eye: a Tebow family recipe for all my football- and meat-loving friends.

Then I gots to the cooking…

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups of flour (I used one cup whole grain whole wheat and a half cup pastry flour to make the crust flakier)
  • A stick of vegan butter (Earth Balance buttery spread is the stuff of dreams)
  • An 8-ounce tub of vegan cream cheese (I prefer Tofutti Garlic and Herb)
  • A half cup each (or however much you’d like) of diced: mushrooms, green peppers, red onions
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • A 6 oz. can of pizza sauce (I like Muir Glen organic basil and garlic)
  • A link of Tofurky italian sausage, cut into bite-size bits
  • A few sprigs of fresh thyme (strip the leaves off the stick and discard it)
  • Italian seasoning (to taste)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh spinach
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

To make your freaking yumtastic dough, follow this recipe. But instead of regular cream cheese, grab yourself some chive and herb or garlic and herb.

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 and grease a standard 9-inch pie plate/tin.
  2. Flatten your yumtastic dough with a floured rolling pin (or wine bottle, if you don’t have a rolling pin handy) and place it in the pie pan.
  3. Warm 2 Tbsps of olive oil in a medium skillet, then throw in your sausage to warm it up.
  4. Add the pizza sauce to the skillet, stir in your veggies, thyme, italian seasoning and garlic and then let simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Remove skillet from heat, and fold in the spinach and basil.
  6. Pour contents of skillet into your pie pan.
  7. Top with vegan cheese, and a touch more Italian seasoning, if you so desire.
  8. Pop the pie in the oven for 40 minutes, until the cheese is melty and the crust starts to brown.
  9. Let the pie cool for about 15 minutes, so it’s easier to cut.
  10. Enjoy!!

I hope you love this pizza as much as my roommate and I do, which is to say we ate the whole thing in less than a day.

Have fun playing with the toppings, and by all means let me know how your experimenting goes.

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