This week was such an absolute WHIRLWIND. With good reason I suppose, as I turned the big 2-8 yesterday! I was blessed with awesome family time, a family dinner, a dinner out… yup, there was a lot of food!
Have you noticed that food is a major way that as family we express our love? When my mom cooks up a big family dinner, it’s her way of showing us all how much she cares. When I cook with my big sister in her kitchen, we are working together in care for one another. And often, my boyfriend, who is just glorious, brings me a big bowl of fruit to work because he knows how much I love it – again, just another expression from one to another of how much we care!
When you realize that food is love, it changes the way you view food and the way you feed yourself.
So in essence, what I’m trying to say is… Pizza = Love. Are you still with me here? I’m chuckling to myself… it’s kind of what I’m saying. A lot of love was put into this pizza, so I hope you will read further on into this recipe because it just might change your pizza-life forever.
Something new I added to this week’s pizza was some homemade almond feta. I will admit that this was quite a process, so you can either remit this from your pizza, or find a substitute. If you make this, I promise you will not only love it but you will also have enough left over to top on anything else you please -it goes great in salads!
- 1 cup blanched almonds
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 TBSP brine – I used olive brine as I was using the olives in this recipe, but you could also use caper brine as well, or lemon juice in a pinch)
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp Himalayan salt or sea salt
Add almonds, water, brine, salt, and garlic into a blender and mix until consistency is smooth. This took for me about one minute. Add mixture to a cheesecloth (if you don’t have one, a clean breathable t-shirt works fine!), and squeeze the liquid out until you are left only with a solid, round, dried out almond feta ball.
Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and let it firm up in the fridge for 2-3 hours. Once firm, bake in the oven at 350 for 20-25 minutes, or just until it starts to brown on the outside.
Once it’s down, take it out and let it cool. Once cool, you can wrap it up in plastic wrap and put it back into the fridge. It keeps well for about one week.
Now for the star of the show! This recipe is dairy free, gluten free, and can be adjusted slightly for my vegan friends by replacing the eggs in the crust.
- Pizza crust flour blend; gluten-free (I used this blend from Bulk Barn)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 TBSP ground flax
- 2/3 cup almond milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup green olives
- 1/4 cup black olives
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 ripe tomatoes, sliced
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 2 marinated artichoke hearts, pulled apart
- 1/4 cup chickpeas
- Almond feta or substitute
Preheat the oven to 400.
Mix pizza crust flour blend, salt, and ground flax in a bowl. Slowly add almond milk and two eggs until consistency is sticky but smooth. Lightly oil your pizza pan with olive oil, and then spread out dough into a circular shape on the pizza pan.
Bake the crust in the oven for 15 minutes at 400.
While the crust is doing it’s thing, add olives, garlic, and olive oil into a food processor. Once blended, you can add this salty goodness onto your crust as the pizza sauce. That’s right, we’re using the basic version of an olive tapenade as the base on this one!
Remove pizza from the oven and add olive sauce as the base. Then layer with artichoke, sliced tomatoes, sliced onion, and chickpeas. Finally, crumble your almond feta over this masterpiece (or simply add your substitute).
Please the pizza back in the oven at 400 for an additional 15 minutes. Your kitchen will begin to smell amazing and before you know it, the pizza will be done.
Would you look at those beautiful greens, reds and purples! This pizza is salty and crunchy, but also had some smooth textures as well. If I had any on hand, balsamic reduction drizzled on top would have made an excellent addition.
Black olives contain iron, which some plant-based eaters struggle to get enough of in their diet! Iron is super important in maintaining healthy energy levels, as it helps in transporting oxygen in our bodies!
Did you also know that the outermost shell of onions contain tons of flavonoids? These are phytonutrients that have antioxidant properties – and we love antioxidants because they protect against free radicals! So don’t go over-peeling your onion – the first layer inside the dry flaky peel is where all the good stuff is!
Studies have shown that artichokes actually help your body produce bile – which is really important in breaking down your food. This, paired with it’s high fiber content, makes artichoke an awesome digestion-boosting addition to this pizza.
Oh, and by the way, I named this pizza “Mediterranean Dreams” because it has me dreaming of the Mediterranean!
Thanks for popping in today! Have a happy, pizza-filled weekend!