LASAGNA PIZZA! Don’t ask me why I decided to make such a labor-intensive pizza on a day when the heat index topped 100F –
so much sauteing! and the boiling! hot noodles! please dog just let me crawl into a hole filled with ice cream and die!
– but I did and it was totally worth it. Best pizza I’ve had in a while. 180+ minutes to make, less than 8 minutes to eat. NO REGRETS.
Inspired by a pie from Ian’s that I spotted on tumblr, this pizza sports a layer of lasagna as I typically make it: namely, filled with tender, sauteed goodness like mushrooms, garlic, carrots, zucchini, and cauliflower. And cheese. Mozzarella Daiya as far as the tongue can stretch!
To wit, a cross-section:
Just look at all that hot, juicy veggie action! What do vegans eat? THIS, PEOPLE! THIS IS WHAT VEGANS EAT!
Of course, you can swap out any of these veggies for those of your choosing: broccoli, maybe, or perhaps peppers and onions. Whatever you like! For another variation (and a pizza that’s easier to eat), omit the veggies entirely for pure pasta pizza. It’s vegan pizza, you can’t go wrong!
…for a Fluffy White Pizza Crust
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F / 45 degrees C) [Optional: sub in 1/2 cup of plain soy milk; this gave us a slightly thinner crust.]
1 tablespoon sugar
2 1/4 tablespoons active dry yeast
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
…for the pizza
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup sliced mushrooms (canned or fresh)
1 tablespoon minced garlic
16 ounces diced tomatoes (canned)
1 large carrot, peeled, washed and sliced into rounds
1 green zucchini, peeled, washed and sliced into rounds
1 cup cauliflower florets (fresh or frozen)
spices to taste (onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, basil, etc.)
8 to 10 lasagna noodles
red pizza or pasta sauce
mozzarella Daiya (or the vegan cheese of your choice)
Cornmeal or cooking spray with which to coat the pizza stone or pizza pan
1. To prepare the dough: stir the water, sugar and yeast together until dissolved. Add the olive oil and salt, as well as any extra spices or seasonings. Stir in the flour until blended. Form the dough into a small ball and let rest in large bowl, covered loosely with a towel, anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours.
2. As the dough is rising, prepare the lasagna filling. In a large skillet or frying pan, heat the olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until browned. Add the garlic, tomatoes (with juice!), carrots, zucchini, and cauliflower – as well as any extra spices you like in your lasagna – and cook, covered on medium, for about fifteen to twenty minutes, or until the veggies are tender. If needed, add a splash of water to prevent the veggies from drying out and sticking to the pan. (But do let most of the excess moisture evaporate before adding them to the pizza!) Set aside.
3. When you’re ready to assemble and bake your pizza, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
4. As the oven’s preheating, cook the lasagna noodles according to the instructions on the package. When done cooking, drain and rinse several times in cold water, until the noodles are cool to the touch and can be handled. Set them aside, either stacking them on a plate or tray using parchment paper to keep the layers separate – or (preferably) drape them over the side of the pot.
5. To assemble the pizza, start by spreading a dusting of cornmeal onto your pizza stone (or lightly coat your pizza pan with cooking spray). Using fingers dipped in olive oil (optional), pat the dough onto the stone, spreading it out evenly.
6. Add the toppings: start with a generous layer of red sauce, followed by the noodles. You can either use them as-is or cut each noodle into thirds, layering the edges on top of one another. (I found the smaller noodles easier to work with.) Cover as much of the pizza as you can without too much overlap. When done, spread a thin bit of sauce of top of the noodles. Add the sauteed veggies, spreading them evenly over the entire pizza. Sprinkle some of the Daiya cheese on top. Finish the lasagna off with one more layer of noodles, again overlapping them just enough to cover (most of) the pizza. Spread a little more red sauce on top. The cherry on top: the rest of the Daiya cheese!
7. Bake at 425 degrees for between 20 and 30 minutes, or until the cheese is nice and melty and the crust, crispy enough to support all the toppings.
8. Serve with a fork and bib! (And maybe an episode of The Sopranos playing in the background? Cake Boss will also do nicely.)
BADA BING BADA BOOM!