Now, I'm usually a "do-it-yourself" kind of gal, but I take the easy route with my pizzas, so go ahead and don't feel guilty about using a store-bough dough. I prefer the Trader Joe's Whole Wheat dough, but you can use what ever you prefer. Where things really get fun are with the toppings! This pizza brings to mind the best of summer's flavors - fresh pesto, grilled fruit and earthy greens!
This recipe is a modification on one that I came across in my newest cookbook acquisition, Plum:Gratifying Vegan Dishes from Seattle's Plum Bistro. I've had the pleasure of dining at Plum on two occasions and I think both the restaurant and this cook book are top-notch. I highly recommend it! Essentially what I have done in my modification is just make everything simpler, using store-bought items rather than making everything from scratch. I've already made a few other recipes from the book and can assure you that they have been mouthwateringly good!
Grilled Pear and Arugula Pesto Pizza
What you'll need
1 package of pizza dough (I used Trader Joe's Whole Wheat dough)
3-4 Tablespoons of Pesto ( I made my own, but you could use store bought, just make sure there's no cheese in it!)
1 cup of Tofu Ricotta, recipe below
1 pear, washed and sliced thinly
1 onion of your choice, sliced thinly
1/4 cup Daiya Mozzarella Style cheese, optional
1/2 cup baby arugula, washed and chopped
1/4 cup toasted almond slices
1/2 package of firm tofu
1/2 teaspoon - 1 teaspoon garlic powder
juice of 1/2 lemon
1/4 olive oil
1-2 teaspoons dried basil or oregano
sal and pepper to taste
How you do it
Pre-heat your oven to 400F.
First make your tofu ricotta. In a blender, food processor, or using an immersion blender, combine all ingredients until they have a ricotta like texture. Be careful not to over mix! Full disclosure - this tofu ricotta is so yummy that when I couldn't fit exactly all of my batch onto my pizza, i just straight up ate it on it's own - so good!
Next roll out your dough. Sprinkle a little bit of flour onto your rolling surface and use a rolling pin to work the dough to our desired thickness. Personally I prefer a thin crust, so that's what i went for. I was gifted with a beautiful Emile Henry Pizza Stone over the holidays (Thanks Lindsay and Abe!) so that's what I rolled my dough out on, as well as cooked it on. It can even go inside the BBQ, if you're into that!
Using a grill pan over medium-high heat (or your BBQ, but carefully!) grill your onions and pears until they have nice brown grill marks, approximately 3 minutes on each side.
Lastly, arrange your pizza. Spread the pesto out onto your rolled dough and then layer on teaspoons of the ricotta and the
Daiya, if you are using it. Next lay down your pear and onion slices, being sure to evenly distribute yumminess around your entire pizza. Pop your pizza in the oven for 10-12 minutes. Test the edge of the dough with your finger to feel for doneness. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with your chopped arugula and toasted almonds. Cut into slices and enjoy!