Veganized: CPK Pear + Gorgonzola Pizza

Vegan Pear and Gorgonzola Pizza
Yields 2 servings (one large pizza or two personal pizzas)

**Disclaimer: I didn’t measure anything when I made this pizza.  The measurements provided below are approximations.

For the ‘gorgonzola’ cream:

3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight
2 tbsp tahini
Juice of 1 lemon
Olive oil
Salt, to taste

In a food processor, combine cashews, tahini, and lemon juice. Slowly add olive oil while food processor is running, until mixture starts to become smooth. Continue processing until all chunks are gone, about 5 minutes. Add salt and run food processor for one more minute.

For the pomegranate vinaigrette:

1 tsp dijon mustard
2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tbsp olive oil

In a small bowl, whisk mustard, pomegranate molasses, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper. Continue whisking while slowly adding olive oil.

For the pizza:

Prepared pizza dough, I made a half batch of this pizza dough recipe that yields a lot of extra dough to use later
1 pear, cored and thinly sliced
1 medium onion, cut into thin slices
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup raw hazelnuts, roughly chopped
salad greens of your choice (I used radicchio)
1 batch ‘gorgonzola’ cream
1 batch pomegranate vinaigrette

Remove pizza dough from fridge 30 minutes prior to baking.  Preheat oven to 400° and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Heat olive oil and balsamic vinegar in a pan over medium-high heat.  Cook onions until they are caramelized.

Roll pizza dough to desired thickness on a floured work surface (I used a fist-sized ball of dough for each personal pizza).  Transfer dough to baking sheet.

Assemble pizza(s) by spreading gorgonzola cream over dough, layering pear slices, and sprinkling caramelized onions and chopped hazelnuts.  Bake until crust rises and is slightly crispy.

Toss greens in vinaigrette and place on pizza.



Weekend Recap: October 28, 2012

After a long and stressful Chipotle-fueled week at work, I was ready for some great times and tasty food when the weekend finally rolled around.

Saturday Fatterday:

Looking down on Silicon Valley from Fremont Older Open Space Preserve

The first order of business was take the D-Monster (my dog, Dylan) somewhere to burn off a little energy.  I loaded her in the car and we headed to Fremont Older Open Space Preserve for some trail running.  We started at the Prospect Rd parking lot and ran the Seven Springs Loop Trail.  I let Dylan set the pace and after 2 miles she decided she didn’t want to run anymore so we walked the final mile back to the car.

Hot Dog

After the run, we had a pumpkin carving party at my apartment with my roomie and our respective boy toys.  Unfortunately, Dylan kept trying to eat our pumpkins so she had to be locked up inside while we continued to work on the balcony.  She looked so sad! In the end, we had cramped hands, four fine looking pumpkins, and an obscene quantity of seeds to roast… I’d call the party a success!

My pumpkin has warts

For dinner, the four of us made the trek to Oakland to eat at Souley Vegan.  I went there once before a couple years ago and loved it so I was so excited to go back.  Last time, I ordered the sample platter which has a sampling of most of their dishes.  This time, I knew exactly what I wanted so I ordered a plate with southern fried tofu, BBQ tofu, and potato salad and a cayenne lemonade to drink.  For dessert, I had a slice of strawberry lemon cake while everyone else had cinnamon rolls.  Everything was delicious, I need to make time to eat there more often.

Tofu overload at Souley Vegan

Sunday Funday:

My roomie and I are both running the Big Sur Half Marathon in few weeks and we wanted to get a 10-miler in this weekend to prepare (and burn off some of the soul food from Saturday). We were itching for a change of scenery, so we headed up to San Francisco for our longish run. The day started at the Sports Basement in the Presidio (hello free parking in the city!).  Our route started out west to Fort Point, then we turned around to run through the Marina, Fort Mason, Aquatic Park, and the cluster-eff that is the Embarcadero.  We turned back toward the Presidio after reaching the Ferry Building.  Our pace was casual, 9:50/mile on average, and we stopped to take pictures in a few places.  The amazing weather and excitement from the Giants fans everywhere made it a perfect day for running in the city.

The Golden Gate Bridge enveloped in fog

After the run, I changed into some clean clothes and downed a Vega smoothie. Then we drove across town, back to the Ferry Building to reward ourselves for our efforts.

First, we got our caffeine fix with mochas from Blue Bottle Coffee…

Soy mocha from Blue Bottle Coffee

Then we picked up vegan donuts from Pepples. I opted for salted caramel.

Many flavors to choose from at Pepples Donuts and they’re all vegan!

Finally, we found a bench outside to enjoy our goodies al fresco. Sunday was a fun day, indeed!

Enjoying my coffee and doughnut with a beautiful view of the Bay Bridge

Grilled Avocado Sammy

This week has been insanely busy at work so I haven’t been spending much time in the kitchen.  Fortunately, I have a repertoire of quick and easy dishes that I can rely to keep my tummy happy when my brain is going crazy.  A grilled avocado sandwich is one of my go-to meals when I get home after a long day at work.  I often prepare this sammy caprese style with tomato and basil, but I didn’t have any tomatoes at home today.

Grilled Avocado Sammy:

2 slices sourdough bread
1/2 avocado, sliced
Earth Balance

Preheat skillet or panini press to medium-high heat

Spread Earth Balance on outside of each slice of bread

Spread avocado between slices of bread, sprinkle salt to taste

Grill until golden brown on each side