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Monday, May 13, 2013

FUSION NAAN PIZZAS AND MESSING AROUND WITH FLATBREADS

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Naan Pizza
I've been taking a wee break from blogging, gathering some steam, so to speak, and also gathering some inspiration.  I haven't baked much for a while and, all of a sudden, I got the baking bug.  So, I made some  flatbread dough-- a very simple one-- and put it in the refrigerator.  With it, I made some stove-top flatbreads.  We ate them plain with some garlicky olive oil and my husband took some for wraps with his work lunch-- I even used one as a wrap for a vegan hotdog for lunch today (better than a crummy commercial bun, I can tell you!).  Last night we had a friend over for dinner and I broiled freshly-made flatbreads with some vegan cheese over sauteed leeks (the green ends most people throw away), which we at as an accompaniment to our soup...mmmmmmmm!

Leek and vegan cheese flatbreads for dinner last night-- so good!
I'm still playing with this recipe-- kneaded or no-knead, for one thing; how much whole wheat flour for another; playing with stovetop vs. baked, etc., etc.. My goal is easy, versatile, low-fat, nutritious, tasty.  Stay tuned for my next blog post!  UPDATE: My 1st flatbread dough; my 2nd flatbread dough-- both no-knead doughs.

All this ruminating on bread reminded me of a  recipe I developed for my old newsletter, The Vegan Feast, a few years ago-- a sort of pizza with a base of vegan naan and an Indian-style pea/tomato sauce, topped with vegan cheese and rich-tasting browned onions. So, I offer it to you here while I make a few more flatbread discoveries for the next post.  Bon appetit!


Printable Recipe

BRYANNA'S FUSION NAAN PIZZAS WITH INDIAN TOMATO SAUCE WITH PEAS, ARUGULA, VEGAN MOZZA,  AND CRISPY BROWNED ONIONS 
Serves 12  Yield: 6 pizzas

            
I wanted to have a casual Indian fusion meal for friends one evening a few years ago, and this is the main dish I was thinking about for days before.  It turned out to be a big hit, and a good choice for a casual company meal, because all of the components can be made either early in the day, or even a day or two ahead of time.  

NOTE: Naan for pizzas can be baked several hours ahead of time.  Bake them for only 3 minutes or so, or until they are risen and set, and starting to become golden. You need to underbake them because they will bake again with the toppings. Remove them with a peel or long-handled spatula. Place them inside of an open paper bag until time to make the pizzas.

 Vegan Naan Bread, slightly under-baked (see my book "World Vegan Feast" for my vegan recipe)-- mine are about 9x7-inches **You can make these ahead of time-- the day before or in the morning.**

OR use commercial naan (if you can find some without dairy) OR vegan pita (uncut)-- you may need to use 1 or 2 more of these
UPDATE: or use one of the flatbread doughs linked to above in the intro text.

Crispy Browned Onions:  **You can make these ahead of time, even the day before.**
4 large onions, thinly-sliced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon salt

Indian Tomato Sauce with Peas: **You can make this earlier in the day and refrigerate.**

2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger

1 tablespoon chopped garlic

1 medium onion, minced

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 tablespoon garam masala or curry powder

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 pinch cayenne

1/4 cup water or vegetarian broth

1/ 14 oz can tomatoes with juice,  mashed with your fingers

1 1/2 cups frozen petit pois (young green peas)

1 teaspoon sugar

Additional:

2 cups raw arugula (approximately)

About 8 ounces vegan mozzarella, shredded

Crispy Browned Onions: Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat.  Add the thinly-sliced onions and salt.  Saute for several minutes, then reduce the heat to medium.  Cook the onions, stirring often, for about 15 minutes.   You want them to be deep brown and a little crispy.  When the are done, set the pan aside, off the heat. 
            
Indian Tomato Sauce with Peas: Add the ginger and garlic to a large nonstick skillet over high heat,  and stir-fry with a little bit of water for a minute. Add the onion and stir-fry until it is soft, about 5 minutes, adding a squirt of water as needed to keep from sticking. Add the seasonings and 1/4 cup of water or broth, stirring around well, then add the tomatoes, peas, and sugar, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Set aside. 
            
Assembling and Baking the Pizzas: About 1/2 an hour before you want to serve the pizzas, set an oven rack in the upper-middle rung. Place a large baking stone (or 2 or more smaller ones) or baking tiles (leaving a 1-inch gap around the border), or a large cast iron skillet (or 2 smaller ones), or griddle or pizza pan , on the oven rack. Heat the oven to 450°F. 

My homemade Naan
            
Place the naan (or pita) on your work surface and cover all them evenly with the Indian Tomato Sauce.  Distribute the shredded mozza evenly between the pizzas.  



Place the raw arugula over the mozza.  Top with the Crispy Browned Onions.


Place the pizza on a baking peel, a large dough scraper/bench knife, cake or cookie lifter, or a small rimless baking sheet-- whatever you are using to transfer the pizzas to the baking stone or alternate.  Transfer to the baking stone and bake as directed below.
           
To use a peel, or alternate, dust it lightly but thoroughly with flour, cornmeal or semolina, gently pull the pizza onto it, letting one edge hang off the rim a bit, if necessary. As you place the front tip of the peel AT THE BACK END of the hot stone or skillet, etc., pull the peel out sharply, and the pizza will slip onto the hot surface.  Close the oven door quickly.  If your stone is big enough, add a second pizza.
            
Bake each pizza (or pair of pizzas) for 3-5 minutes each, remove immediately and repeat until the others are cooked.  Cut them in half and serve immediately!

Nutrition (per serving): 338.0 calories; 36% calories from fat; 13.8g total fat; 0.0mg cholesterol; 900.6mg sodium; 281.2mg potassium; 45.0g carbohydrates; 3.8g fiber; 5.5g sugar; 9.3g protein; 7.1 points.

Enjoy!




3 comments:

GlutenFreeHappyTummy said...

My goodness that looks SO GOOD!!

Lydia Claire said...

I have had this book on my Amazon wishlist since before it was released. I can't wait to own it one day!

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Lydia Claire-- did you mean to post to win a "Whole Grain Vegan Baking" book? If so, please comment on that blog post, so i won't miss your name!