vegan pizza

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Daiya Pizza vs. Tofurky Pizza

Published June 2, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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I just haven’t been able to get my Vida Vegan Con post together yet, so instead I give you a quick vegan pizza post. I was planning on getting that post written up yesterday, and was just sitting down to do so, when I got a call from Portland. It was the cab company with whom we had ridden last weekend, and in which Thomas accidentally left his phone. Apparently the phone he had reported stolen & gotten blacklisted was finally turned in, so we actually jumped in the car and drove back down to Portland for the night. But I digress.

When we got back today, we spent most of the afternoon having an impromptu goth dance party (just the two of us) in our apartment while the cats enjoyed the sunshine and looked on.

(Thomas took this picture of Ganon!)

(Thomas took this picture of Ganon!)

And here's little miss Midna

And here’s little miss Midna

Somewhere in there I decided to raid the freezer for pizza, and we decided a pizza show down was in order. In case you were wondering who won in our taste test…

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The Tofurky was the clear winner due to the Daiya’s technical difficulties in the crust department. It came cracked in several pieces, so we had to bake it on some foil, and it ended up having a soggy texture. The flavor of the roasted vegetables was pretty delicious though, so I think we may have to have a rematch for fairness. The only thing I don’t like about Tofurky’s pizzas is that they don’t give you enough crust. We do love their pepperoni, though.

This inconclusive taste test has been brought to you by Ty & Thomas. And here’s a picture of us at the White Owl in Portland yesterday, just because…

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Vegan in Denver!

Published May 1, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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I’d like to think that I’ve become much more of a minimalist over the years, and that’s why I was able to pack only a backpack’s worth of stuff for 4 days in Denver, but honestly, it has a little more to do with the fractured epicondyle on my left humerus. I really wouldn’t have been able to lift a roller bag into an overhead bin by myself, and I try to avoid checking bags if at all possible. (Especially after my gate checked bag got lost on the way to Vegas in February.) It made for much easier traveling though, and I even got to board the plane earlier, so I’ll probably try to do this for short trips in the future!

(This is a very picture heavy post, as I packed in all of my adventures into this one single post!)

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I flew Fronteir Air, whom I’d never flown with before. I had a light dinner consisting of a Mediterranean snack box (similar to Alaska Air’s offering) that turned out to be all vegan. It included bruschetta, hummus, pita chips, seasoned olives, dried cranberries, almonds and cookies. I chose a Colorado brewed Hazed & Infused to sip on while I nibbled for the 2 hour flight.

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Here’s Joanna displaying what’s left of their last snowstorm. She’s only been in Denver for a month, so she was excited that I came so we could do some exploring together. She also decided she was going to eat vegan with me the whole trip. She’s done vegan cleanses before and felt great on them, so she’s no stranger to what it’s all about. (Though I warned her that I was on vacation, so it wasn’t going to necessarily be health food on my part!) She’s been trying to avoid dairy, gluten and soy anyway, so I’m trying to encourage her to feel good ALL the time, and make a plant based diet a more permanent change.

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Her hubby doesn’t care for Indian food, so she expressed a great desire to eat it, which I was more than happy to accommodate. I’m almost always ready to eat Indian food!! I found Bombay Clay Oven on Happy Cow. They have gluten free and dairy free items marked on the menu, but what I really wanted was my fave… Saag Channa. They had it on their lunch specials, so I asked if they could make it vegan for me. After I assured our waitress that I eat dairy free versions all the time, she went back in the kitchen to inquire. (Turns out she doesn’t eat dairy either, so she was excited to find out that this dish is still delicious sans yogurt.)

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Jojo got a spicy Vegetable Medly Kadai, and we ordered some roti bread minus the butter, to go with our little feast. Best part? Even though it looks like a fancy place, with cloth napkins, excellent service and super good food, the whole bill was under 20 bucks!

After this we walked around a bit and I saw Joanna’s new work digs. Then I went and had a fantastic massage with Mallory Asti. It included much needed work on my upper body, full massage, and reflexology and energy work for my injured arm. She has an extra low introductory rate for new clients, so if you’re in the area, I highly recommend you check her out!

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Mexican fast food joint Cafe Rio called to us for a quick dinner of bean tacos. Both their pinto & black beans are vegan…

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and we loaded them with lots of green yumminess like lettuce, cilantro, guacamole and some pico and hot sauce for good measure. Another meal for under $10 per person.

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That night, before bed I was on Happy Cow and found a local (CO & CA) pizza chain, Patxi’s Pizza that made VEGAN DEEP DISH pizza! I was so excited, I could hardly get to sleep. I hadn’t had deep dish pizza in at least 12 years. When Joanna called me on her way home from work, I quickly explained all about it and called in our order so it’d be cooking while we were on our way. (Deep dish takes 35-40 minutes).

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We started with a greek salad (no feta!), no dressing. (The waiter said the dressing was vegan “except for the little bit of anchovy”, and Joanna promptly told him that it was not vegan then. Hah!) I splashed it with some of the red wine vinegar he brought to the table. Nothing to write home about here, just wanted to get some fresh veggies in before the pizza.

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The pizza was FANTASTIC. I ordered it right off the menu, no adjustments.

Authentic Chicago “Stuffed” Our flagship pie. A deep dish pizza with a layer of crust on the bottom, followed by toppings and cheese, all covered by another thin layer of dough, and topped with our homemade sauce. Also available in whole wheat dough. Prepared and cooked in a deep dish pan. 35-40 minute cook time.

VeganWhole wheat crust, fresh spinach, crushed garlic, red onion, Daiya vegan cheese. $20.50 for a 10″

Seriously recommend you try this if you’re near any of their locations in California or Colorado!

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Come dinner we had the extreme pleasure of finally (in my case!) meeting Amber of Monk and Mao. She moved to Seattle right before we did, but unfortunately (for me!) they moved back to her hometown of Denver before we ever got to meet up! So yah, totally one of those moments where you meet someone and instantly bond.

We chose Watercourse Foods based on their yummy beers and their vegan nachos. Amber and I settled in with some ale, nachos and seitan buffalo wings…

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The lighting was a little tricky, so sorry about the picture quality there! The seitan wings are a huge portion! I didn’t really care too much about the ranch dressing, which I found reminiscent of soy milk, but the wings themselves were really good. Our nachos were delicious, but Amber nailed it when she said it was the “bottom of the bag” nachos. Almost all of our chips were in tiny little pieces, so that at the end I was just eating them with a fork. I’m not really complaining about that though, because it was heavy on the refried beans, and I love me some refried beans, eaten by fork or hand.

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Joanna had the THE MAXIMUS BURGER – Homemade pinto bean and quinoa burger served on our kaiser roll and topped with lettuce, tomato, red onion and special sauce,  with some steamed kale that I made disappear at the end of our meal. (Yes, I will eat your kale. You don’t have to ask me twice.) I also got to sneak a taste of the burger patty and it was pretty darn good.

The nice thing about Watercourse, as explained to us by the server, is that everything on the menu is vegan unless it says it has a cheese option. And Amber says they’ll usually confirm with you about if you’re sure you want dairy cheese when ordering those. So needless to say, this is one of her frequent haunts.

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We all had such a great time! Joanna made a new vegan friend in Denver, and Amber and I chatted until Joanna practically dragged me to the car! 🙂 Hahaha! Thanks Jenna for remembering that this is where she lived, and providing the catalyst for our meeting. I had totally forgotten that’s where she moved!

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I was lucky enough to get some acupuncture from Joanna for my injured arm Saturday morning. She’s a talented little lady if you have any acupuncture/body talk/Reiki needs in Denver. You can find her over at the Om Flow!

Then I hit the leftovers for breakfast. ; ) It was super hot outside by mid day, and even though it was only 67, my weather app said it felt like 77. And that it did. So we did the only logical thing to do… we hit the ice cream shop.

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Sweet Action is a regular ice cream shop with vegan options. And man, everyone I talked to loved this place! Seems like they carry at least 2 vegan flavors per day. This particular day they had cinnamon roll & boysenberry swirl. Surprisingly enough, the boysenberry won out in my personal taste test. It was like a yummy, frozen berry cheesecake in a cup! Heavenly!

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They also regularly carry pre-packaged ice cream sandwiches, and this day, they had two varieties. They had double chocolate cookies with coffee ice cream, and Joanna got the almond cardamom cookies with vanilla. That sucker was huge! I ate all of mine and made a concerted effort to finish hers until she shut me down. (She literally took it away from me.) I had to admit, I had probably eaten enough sugar anyway. The cookie was nicely spiced, and the vanilla ice cream, well, it was a little vanilla in comparison. I think the chocolate/coffee combo would probably have been tastier. I’m not a huge sweet tooth, but there’s something very satisfying about eating ice cream on a hot day, with the windows open. We walked around a little and I found a cute second hand dress and a pair of vintage looking shades. Then we had to head home to get me ready for the airport.

I felt a bit bad that I didn’t go to healthier vegan places with Jo, and dragged her down a path of vegan junk food with me, but she insisted that it was still superior. 🙂 It was a great little holistic get away for me too, and I always love a little quality time with my bestie. Thanks Jojo!!

So if there are any places you think I missed out on, please comment below as I’ll probably be out to visit my Denver ladies again. The only other place I was curious about trying was Sputnik, which is attached to a music venue. We passed it on Thursday night, and they had a punk rock show going. They have a small vegan menu in addition to their regular bar food.

Next trip for me is going to be next month, Memorial Day weekend for Vida Vegan Con in Portland (a.k.a. Vegan Mecca) so that should be a whole mess of photos and info and meetups too! Can’t wait!

Pizza Fusion Ft Lauderdale – Bruschetta Pizza

Published August 26, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Just showing off the yum pizza I ate last Saturday at Pizza Fusion, Fort Lauderdale. This is the Bruschetta pizza on multigrain crust made vegan with soy cheese, and it’s one of my favorites. There is actual an Very Vegan pizza on the menu, but it has mushrooms, so I’ve never tried it. That being said,  it’s easy enough to veganize quite a few of their existing offerings or create your own. I even got my soy cheese substitution for free with my Foursquare checkin. 🙂

Although Pizza fusion can be a little pricey, it’s a great place to dine with a group of mixed diet people. Not only do they have 2 kinds of vegan cheese (Daiya and soy), but they also have gluten free crust, “regular” pizzas, salads, organic beer & wine, etc.

I asked the girl if the gluten free crust was vegan and she gave me a very weak “Yes” (which I didn’t trust), so I passed. Oh yah, they also have vegan brownies if you’re needing a dessert fix.

Check out their website for locations. I do appreciate a chain that’s trying to be green and mainstream healthier versions of things we all love, like pizza. I may be eating high raw right now, but sometimes there is just no substitution for pizza!

Mellow Mushroom Vegan Margherita Pizza

Published July 29, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Just a quick update to show off our yummy pizza from last night. This is a large vegan Margherita with Daiya cheese and tempeh. It’s got an olive oil & garlic base, red sauce, sliced tomatoes and basil. Soooo good!

We washed it down with some $3 Sam Adams pints and watched the olympics and the Red Sox beat the Yanks.

Keep an eye out for plenty of posts coming up this week. I just did a little detox cleanse, and I’ll be writing about that as well as trying to clear myself some counter space in my cramped kitchen so I can start preparing some high raw meals again. Hope you’re enjoying your weekend! : )

Mellow Mushroom’s vegan pizza makes me happy!

Published December 28, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

Just showing off some of the awesome pizza we ate last night. I wasn’t in the mood to cook and decided we should go to MM, even though we have no business going out to eat right now. We’re broke and trying to move out of state. Oh well. It was SO GOOD.

Me: Okay, we’ll split a large pizza. No beer. No appetizers. Just pizza. We can drink good beer at home for free! : )

This pizza was a tomato sauce base w/ Daiya cheese, caramelized onions, sun dried tomatoes & jerk tofu. Mmm! Too bad there aren’t any Mellow Mushrooms in Seattle! In the meantime, we have to take advantage of the deliciousness.

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Pizza Fusion – Fort Lauderdale, Fl

Published August 29, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

I finally got to try out Pizza Fusion yesterday. I’d been meaning to go there for a long time, pretty much since I started eating fully vegan, actually. On the way there I was having a major craving for iced green tea, and was thrilled to find out that not only do they serve it there, (with free refills no less!) but it’s even organic. Sweet. (Well, unsweet, in this case, just how I like it!)

They had a pretty awesome array of organic beers, wines and non-alcoholic beverages to choose from. You can take out or sit down for table service. We had been running around a bit that afternoon, and it was super hot outside, so we decided to just park it there for awhile and enjoy the A/C, so to the table we went. Our server was super friendly and helpful. I loved that the menu had clearly marked vegan items to make it easy. We chose to veganize one of their specialty pizzas, the Four Cheese & Sundried Tomato Pizza with the vegan soy cheese instead of the myriad of cheeses it was supposed to come with. I think we caught him off guard with ordering a four cheese and replacing it with vegan cheese. It took him a minute to process. I explained that I really liked the other toppings… sundried tomatoes, roasted garlic, fresh basil… he understood. I explained that I was vegan. He gave us the option of regular or multigrain crust. I asked him if he was sure the multigrain was vegan (sometimes eggs get thrown into these things!), and he said he was, so we went with that.

We had probably eaten half of the pizza before I realized that it didn’t have the fresh basil. Oh well! Technically I ordered the specialty pizza with vegan cheese substituted vs. the build your own to save the (1) extra topping charge, so it was a wash.

This was ridiculously delicious! The crust was great. You could see the little flecks of flax (I mean, it looked like flax to me!) and it was a nice, thin crust with a good crispness on the outside and the right amount of chewiness. I love sundried tomatoes and these were incredibly tasty. I’ve really only had Daiya on restaurant pizza before, so I was especially scrutinizing the cheese here. I think they use Follow Your Heart brand, but honestly, it may be purely speculation on my part. (I can’t remember if I read it somewhere or if I’m making it up.) It had the same sort of taste and texture as Tofutti cheese slices. The way they go from completely melted to kinda thick and gloppy. By the way, it tastes way better than I’m making it sound, hah. It just sort of skips that stretchy cheese texture that Daiya is so good at. No sweet Daiya taste though, the taste is spot on to cheese. Okay, maybe that’s my vegan brainwashed mind talking. It’s probably not as salty. 🙂 It was wonderful.

We also took one of their vegan brownies to go. Here’s what remains. I nibbled on it on the way home. It was huge! Pretty good. Very fudgey and chocolate chips throughout, for the true chocoholic. I’m not the biggest brownie person, but I would’ve liked it better if it had some frosting. Hah. I’m not complaining, just suggesting!

Overall, a FANTASTIC experience. I would definitely recommend checking them out if you live near one. We also found a coupon in the New Times we picked up on the way out for a buy one specialty pizza get a cheese free, so we were pretty excited about that and will definitely be paying them another visit in the very near future! Thanks pizza fusion! 😀

Vegan Tex-Mex Deep Dish Cornbread Pizza

Published August 25, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

I originally wrote a version of this recipe over a year ago. It was the veganizing of a recipe that I’d already made vegetarian years before. It was one of my favorite go to recipes when I learned how to cook. There is something very comforting about all that yumminess atop a wonderful cornbread crust. I finally got to try it out last night, and here it is with some final tweeks! I use TVP, but you can use vegan crumbles instead to save a step, if you want to.

PS– I made this with a different [savory] cornbread recipe that I was trying out. That new cornbread turned out to be a fail, but the topping is delicious on it’s own or over some brown rice too, if you don’t feel like fussing with the cornbread part. Still broil the cheese on. Then you can use it as a tex-mex picadillo or with some lettuce, tomatoes, rice, etc. as a burrito or taco filling!

Ty’s Tex-Mex Deep Dish Cornbread Pizza

Recipe for your favorite cornbread (try mine!)
vegan butter to grease skillet

Reconstituted TVP:

1 1/2 c. dry TVP granules
1 c. water or vegetable stock
1 tbsp. liquid smoke
2 tbsp. vegan worcestershire
1 tbsp. bragg’s, shoyu, tamari or low-sodium soy sauce

Toppings:

olive oil for misting skillet
medium onion, diced
1/2 tsp. salt
bell pepper, diced

reconstituted TVP , or 1lb equivalent of vegan crumbles
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons hot sauce, or 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, optional

1 15 oz. can vegan re-fried beans
1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes (with chiles optional), well drained

1/4 c. nutritional yeast, optional
1 c. vegan shredded cheese (i used Daiya pepperjack)

Optional:

shredded lettuce, fresh tomatoes, black olives, vegan sour cream, salsa, cilantro

Directions:

1. Prepare cornbread according to recipe directions and pour into the bottom of a greased large oven-proof skillet. (they say you can wrap a skillet handle really well with aluminum foil and cross your fingers, but i’ve never tried it.) Bake according to instructions, or until top is lightly browned, and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Set aside.

2. To reconstitute the TVP: In medium sauce pan, heat water, liquid smoke, worcestershire, bragg’s until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat, stir in TVP, and set aside.

3. Heat oil in second skillet to medium. Add onions and salt, cook for 5 minutes, or until translucent. Stir in bell pepper and cook an additional 2 minutes. Add TVP and spices and cook 3-4 minutes. Add refried beans and tomatoes, mix in until heated through.

4. Top cornbread with TVP mixture. Sprinkle with nutritional yeast  and cheese. Place skillet under broiler to melt cheese, about 3-5 minutes. Garnish with lettuce, fresh tomatoes, olives, sour cream, salsa, and/or cilantro, as desired.

The Vegan Zombie inspired Pizza Rolls

Published August 12, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

So apparently Thomas (who’s an omni that craves vegan foods lots) had secretly watched the vegan zombie pizza rolls video several times before he put in a request. I had some pizza dough frozen, so it was easy enough to oblige, but he kept cracking me up, because he seemed to have comitted much of their preparation to memory!

I didn’t have any pizza sauce or marinara, so I threw what I did have together to make this:

1 8oz can of tomato sauce
1 14.5 oz can of diced fire roasted tomatoes w garlic
About 1/3 c. of leftover chopped roma tomatoes
Squirt of ketchup
Squirt of agave

This made a ton of sauce. Way more than you need for the rolls & for dipping, so I’ll probably use the rest as a base for pasta sauce.

I used about half of that vegan sausage and “large” dough ball to make 4 pizza rolls, which we promptly ate all up. They were so good that they actually broke my pizza stone with their awesomeness!

Cheeseless Pizza + Daiya = Happy Vegan Pizza

Published June 5, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

Okay, so there are quite a few choices for prepackaged frozen vegan pizzas out there now, most of which I think I’ve reviewed!  However, I still find that adding my own Daiya to either a home made pizza or a frozen cheeseless one still gives me the best results for my palate. I keep all 3 flavors of Daiya (though I still haven’t tried the pepperjack yet, but the reviews are awesome) in the freezer at all times. Keeping in the freezer lets you just use however much you need without the worry of it going bad after opening.

My two current faves are the Amy’s roasted veggie cheeseless pizza, and the 365/Whole Food house label personal size vegan cheeseless pizzas.

My frozen pizza making usually goes like this…

1. Preheat toaster oven. I use the convection setting. Remove pizza from box. Remove overwrap. Cut pizza box open and place pizza on it*.

2. Shake nutritional yeast, oregano, and crushed red peppers all over pizza. Top with preferred amount of Daiya cheese(s).

3. Bake 10 minutes. Cut into 4ths or 6ths or 8ths. Eat. YUM!

*this keeps everything clean. you can dress the pizza in the cut open box. put the pizza in to bake. shake out the mess, and then cut it back in the box. oh? you have some leftover? close the box, and put it in the fridge!

Whole Foods 365 Vegan Gluten-Free Rice Crust Pizza

Published May 24, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

So here is my follow up to my review of their whole wheat crust version.  This was surprisingly great! Not only was the crust delicious, but the toppings were plentiful! Same great sauce and veggies as the whole wheat one. I’m not the gluten-free type, but I think I may have liked this just as much, if not better than the whole wheat one. I topped it with nutritional yeast, oregano, crushed red peppers and a handful of Daiya mozzarella before baking.

SO GOOD! And a wonderful, quick lunch.

PS – I bake for 10 minutes, at 425* on my toaster oven’s convection setting.

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