Pizza is one of those things people think you’ll miss out on as a vegan. I’m happy to say that they’re really wrong. Each day thousands of vegan pizzas make it out of ovens the world over, and all without nary an animal product in sight. Here’s my favourite vegan pizza dough recipe so you can join in the international pizza party!
You can use whatever flour you like really, but I like wholemeal spelt the best.
Makes: 4 big pizzas
Preparation time: 3 hours + (including rising time)
600g spelt flour (plus extra for dusting)
650ml warm (but not hot) water (and maybe a little extra)
5 teaspoons of baker’s yeast
2 teaspoons salt
2 tablespoons olive oil (plus extra for oiling bowl and tins)
Very large mixing bowl
4 pizza tins (these will have holes in their base), or a stone
1./ Add the warm water to a very large mixing bowl. You want the water’s temperature to be on the hotter end of warm, but far, far below boiling temperature. Too hot and the yeast will die, too cold and they won’t ‘wake up’, so this is crucial. Stir in the yeast until dissolved, and wait for 5-10 minutes. If the mixture has frothed up, you’ve got a good temperature, your yeast are doing their thing, and you can start adding the flour. If there’s no frothing, try again with fresh warm water and yeast.
2./ Add the salt and olive oil, then stir in the flour until a dough forms. The dough itself should be a bit tacky to the touch, but it shouldn’t stick to your hands. If it’s too sticky, add more flour; too dry, add more water.
3./ Knead the dough until it’s springy and smooth (c. 10 minutes).
4./ Lightly oil the mixing bowl. Take the dough out while you do this, then return it afterwards. Cover the bowl with cling film and a tea towel. Leave this in a warm place for 1-2 hours, or until the dough is at least twice its original size.
5./ When you’re ready to assemble your pizzas just divide the dough up and punch it down into roughly circular shapes to fit into your tins (which should be lightly oiled). Turn your oven on high (c. 260 degrees C, or 500 F) to preheat.
6./ Add whatever toppings you like. I like passata, pesto, stringy vegan cheese, pine nuts, and fresh rocket (AKA arugula). Bake the pizzas in the oven for c. 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.
7./ Welcome to the worldwide vegan pizza party!!!
Until next time...