Recipe: Pizza with Brussels Sprouts, Red Onion and Chickpeas

Since I went vegan, one of me weaknesses was pizza, and cheese, and obviously those two things were related. I’ve had some cheese relapses but I got over that now after finding awesome vegan cheese for my sandwiches and the last time I had a slice of pizza with cheese, it felt so fatty that melted cheese (something I used to love) is something I don’t want to eat anymore, I don’t really like the taste anymore. I also realize that dairy always made me feel so full and blah (not saying I’m lactose intolerant but there’s definitely a change in how I feel now after ditching dairy). It’s funny how your taste buds can change like that. As a kid I hated Brussels sprouts for example, now I love them and I can’t get enough of them. Serve me a bowl of them, simply cooked in water, and I’ll happily devour it.

Anyway, I’m drifting off! I have been obsessed by making a pizza with Brussels sprouts, tried it once before but I also added cauliflower because I had that and it had to be used but while that pizza was delicious as well (how could it not be with two of my favorite vegetables?) I had put too many of the vegetables on it so the pizza got soggy. I think I even spread pureed cauliflower on it instead of cheese, which made it hard for the dough to cook through. But maybe that was another pizza experiment. Today, I decided to give it another try and be more careful with the toppings and it turned out delicious. Definitely making this again and again and I’m already looking forward to eating what is left tomorrow. Only thing I forgot was to put garlic on it, which would have made it even better because garlic makes everything better. Next time!

It didn’t photograph very well and looks crowded but it was just perfect on the plate.

Ingredients

Pizza dough (I used the ready made kind that you just roll out but you can obviously make your own as well but I’m always too lazy to do that)
Tomato sauce (I had sauce that came with the dough but again, you can make your own)
MushroomsRed onion
Brussels sprouts (cut in halves or more slices depending on their size)
Chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
Vegan cream cheese (Optional but I still had some left of this recipe and it worked really well)
Vegan grated pizza cheese (I get mine from Veganic, a German vegan store but I just found out they have a British branch as well)
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar

Prepare the dough and spread the sauce on it, then spread the cream cheese on top of that and start putting on your toppings. I started with the onion and mushrooms and the proceeded with the Brussels sprouts because I wanted them roast well. Drizzle some olive oil and balsamic vinegar over it and then add the chickpeas and finish with some grated cheese. Bake until it’s done and enjoy!

I absolutely loved this because the dough was crispy and the balsamic vinegar adds and red onion a certain sweetness to the Brussels sprouts (awesome combination, I use it often). The olive oil (and the vinegar as well obviously) keeps things just moist enough and adds a bit of fat. I’m not completely sure what the cream cheese did but I’m definitely doing that again, it seemed to give the pizza something extra I really liked.

Recipe: Quick and Easy Rice Salad

I had quite some rice over from last night because my hand slipped and I ended up putting much more rice than intended in my rice cooker. Which turned out to be quite perfect for today’s dinner as I didn’t feel much like cooking so I threw together a quick rice salad with chickpeas. Any other grain will work as well, quinoa, cous cous, bulgur, even pasta. You could also substitute the chickpeas by any other kind of beans but I found the subtle taste to go well with this dish. I used a red bell pepper, onion and some mushrooms because that was what I had at hand but you can basically throw in any vegetable you like. I personally liked the crispness of the pepper and the onion and as I found out yesterday red bell peppers have a huge amount of vitamin C so I was happy I still had one lying around and I’ll be making sure to eat them more often. I added some raisins because I liked to have something sweet in my salad as well to even out the onion and spicy dressing. I used mayo for the dressing today because it was the easiest but I will be better here next time and substitute for something vegan with less fat but I was lazy tonight. I realized later I still had some soy cream in the fridge I could have used… I didn’t have lemon or lime juice at hand but next time I’ll add a bit to the dressing (which may be completely different next time because I made this one up ad hoc and I might not remember exactly what I put in unless I come here to check.

Ingredients

Salad:
Rice
Chickpeas
Bell pepper
Onion
Mushrooms
Raisins

Dressing:
Mayo (or substitute)
Chili sauce
Curry powder
Cayenne pepper
Dried coriander leaves
Powdered mustard seeds
Agave syrup (or anything to sweeten it a bit)
Olive oil
White wine vinegar (rice wine vinegar would work as well)
Salt

Mix everything together to make the dressing and then mix it with the other ingredients and enjoy. Perfect summer time dinner which you can vary to your own likings.