Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free Challenge #4: DF CF Cheezy Pine Nut Pizza Recipe

December 19th, 2008 yum Posted in Cooking for Karina, Dairy Free, Garlic-free, Italian, JM friendly, Mushrooms, Nuts, Pizza, Soy Free, Sweet Potato, Tomato-free, Vegan, portobello mushrooms, soy-free challenges, walnut 7 Comments »

Thin gluten-free crust with pine nut “cheese”, roasted sweet potatoes, fresh basil, roasted mushrooms and roasted red pepper, prior to baking.

One big challenge to the dairy-free, soy-free lifestyle is that of a cheesy pizza. Sure, you can make a tomato sauce and just skip the cheese, but it doesn’t have that rich mouth feel or decadence. I’ve played with a variety of solutions to this problem. There are a number of lactose free or dairy free cheeses on the market, including almond, rice, and soy cheeses that are also gluten-free. However, finding a commercial w”cheese” that is truly 100% dairy-free as well as soy-free can be another story. Besides, if you’ve ever tried these cheese “substitutes” you know that they taste almost nothing like real cheese, and often don’t seem to add anything good to a recipe besides the idea of cheese. Luckily vegan cookbooks such as The Uncheese Cookbook have more creative alternatives using a variety of “real” foods as the base for their un-cheese recipes. Some of these recipes use soy (frequently) or gluten (less frequently), but there are many options that do work for a gluten,dairy, and soy-free diet.

However, interestingly one of the most successful soy and dairy-free cheese substitutes I found was not in a vegan cookbook, exactly, but on a related raw foods cookbook. Raw foodists might find it sacrilege, but I used it in a baked lasagna to wonderful effect. This recipe for soy and dairy-free lasagna has been one of the most popular recipes at the Book of Yum because it answers a real need in the food-sensitive community for TASTY cheese substitutes. This recipe came to mind when Mother was visiting us this week. She can eat gluten, but is allergic to soy and dairy, so she doesn’t often have the chance to have “cheesy” dishes. She is also allergic to garlic and avoids tomatoes due to RA. When I decided to make a dairy-free pizza, I thought immediately that I should try using the yummy pine nut sauce on it as the “cheese” base. I was also inspired by the season to roast sweet potato cubes and mushrooms for toppings. I decided to simplify the pine nut recipe a bit and found it was just as good, if not better than the original. It was a big hit with my allergy-sensitive Mom, and the DH and I enjoyed it as well. The combination of pine nut sauce, fresh basil, and roasted vegetables was absolutely addicting. Because I had extra pizza crusts I decided to also make a dairy-free walnut pesto and top it with roasted vegetables as well. Yum! And nobody missed the cheese (or soy) at all.

Looking for a gluten-free pizza crust recipe?
Here’s a fun thin-crust recipe- it doesn’t rise much but makes enough for 6 pizzas that you can enjoy over a week’s time.
And, here’s my personal favorite crust- Carol Fenster’s classic gluten-free Pizza recipe with allergen-free pizza topping recipes

Dairy-Free Soy-Free Pine Nut Cheesy Pizza
1 gluten-free pizza crust

Pine Nut “Cheese” (new version)
1/2 cup pine nuts
1 to 1 1/2 tsp. brown rice vinegar
1/4 tsp or less salt
1/8 cup water or more

1 sweet potato, peeled, cubed
handful fresh basil leaves, julienned
4 baby portabella mushrooms (between crimini and portabella)
1 red pepper for roasting
olive oil
salt, pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Soak 1/2 cup pine nuts in enough water to cover for an hour. Then drain, rinse, and blend in food processor with dash of salt, vinegar and water until you have a creamy consistency. Put in small container and reserve, refrigerating.

Prepare toppings:
Toss sweet potato cubes with dash of olive oil, salt and pepper if you like. Place on baking sheet. Remove stems from mushrooms and rub with a little olive oil. Season with salt and pepper if you like. Place whole red pepper on baking sheet or on oven rack along with rest of your veggies. Roast for 15 minutes and check your mushrooms. If they seem done, remove mushrooms from oven, dribbling juices over them and letting rest. If not, check mushrooms again in another 5 minutes. After they have rested, you can slice them. Roast sweet potatoes until they are fork tender but not mushy. Roast red pepper (turning occasionally) until sides are all slightly charred. When you take red pepper out of oven, place in freezer safe ziploc bag, seal, and let steam for 10 minutes on counter before removing. Rub off skin with paper or cloth towel, cut in half and de-seed. Slice and/or cut into bite sized pieces and reserve.

To assemble your pizza, top with even coating of your pine nut “cheese”. If you have some, you could rub the crust first with a bit of blended sundried tomato and olive oil to give the crust a more attractive golden color that will stand out from the pine nut “cheese”. (I didn’t do that this time, Mom is also sensitive to tomatoes). Sprinkle with julienned basil, roasted sweet potato, mushroom slices and red pepper pieces. Bake following pizza crust instructions. The thin-crust pizza recipe I used requires a short bake time (12 min or less) and so is ideal. For a long baking recipe, you might bake the crust halfway before topping the pizza.

My dairy-free, soy-free Mom loved this pizza, and loved the pine nut sauce.
Walnut Dairy Free Pesto Recipe
1/2 cup walnuts
2 cups fresh basil leaves
sprinkle salt
1/8 cup roasted fresh onions
1/4 cup olive oil
Combine ingredients in blender or food processor, drizzling in olive oil as you blend it. Taste and season with more salt or other spices if desired. Enjoy!
I used this pesto on a gluten-free pizza crust topped with roasted sweet potatoes, roasted potatoes, roasted red pepper, roasted onion, and even half roasted chard. Yum yum yum!
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Gluten-free Menu Swap and Meal Plan Monday

September 7th, 2008 yum Posted in Dressing of the Week, Gluten Free Menu Swap Monday, Menu, Menu Plan Monday, Onions, Raspberry, Soy Free, Vegan, walnut 4 Comments »

Two weeks of menus! Crazy, I know, but we were away last weekend and I didn’t have time to come up with a menu until too late to share. But, since I made one, I thought I’d share it with you now along with this week’s menu. Gluten Free Mommy is hosting this week’s menu swap, with a theme ingredient of tomatoes. I may just have to blog about my beautiful heirloom tomatoes that I’ve been harvesting. You can find even more lovely menus at Org Junkie.

Week One: September 1- September 7
Monday: Gourmet American Sandwich
Roasted Red Pepper Avocado Clubs with White bean hummus on Gluten-Free Pantry Favorite Sandwich Bread (contains dairy)

Wednesday: Vegan
Southwestern Corn Casserole (La Dolce Vegan p. 169)
Spinach walnut salad (La Dolce Vegan p. 78)

Friday: Vegan, fusion Indian
Brown Rice
red lentil sauce (La Dolce Vegan p. 182)
Roasted Curry green beans

Saturday: Vegan
Tomato Peanut and Kale Pasta
From La Dolce Vegan p. 134- and it couldn’t be simpler! You simmer 1 can of tomato juice (I used Campbell’s) in a saucepan with 2 cups of finely diced kale (no stem) for about ten minutes, and then add 2 tbsp. of nut butter (peanut, almond, whatever) and 1-2 tsp. of chili-garlic sauce. Mix in cooked pasta and suddenly you have a great, vegan “cheesy” dish… Very simple and a great way to get DH’s and kids (cough cough) who would otherwise never eat kale to eat it without even noticing. Imagine my surprise when DH said it was good and asked for more… whahahah, all part of my evil plan.

Baked Good of the Week: Peach tartlette

Week Two: Sep 8-13
Monday: South Indian
Masala Dosa with Coconut Chutney

Tuesday: Chinese
Green Bean szechuan pepper Stir Fry with cashews
deep fried tofu
Jasmine Rice

Wednesday: Mediterranean
Chickpea Flour Socca with Green Garden not-ricotta and Roasted heirloom tomato topping
Jicama, Orange, and Fennel Salad (70)

Thursday: Italian
Zucchini Eggplant Lasagna (119) with homemade GF lasagna pasta

Friday: Indonesian/ vegetarian
Indonesian Brown Rice Vegetable Salad (51)

Baked Good of the Week: Cinnamon Sugar Baked Gluten-Free Donuts

Spinach Walnut Salad with Raspberry Vinaigrette
1 cup unsweetened raspberries (frozen)
3 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. flax oil (or other healthy oil)
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 tsp salt

3 cups Baby spinach (enough for your desired servings)
1/2 small red onion, sliced very thinly
1/2 cup lightly toasted, chopped walnuts
1/4 cup fresh raspberries (optional)

Heat raspberries and sugar in a small saucepan and bring mixture to a boil, letting it boil for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Take off the heat. Strain raspberry mixture through a mesh strainer into a small bowl. Throw away seeds (unless you are impatient and just pitch the whole thing in the bowl like me, cough cough) and add remaining ingredients, whisking together or using automated whisk until emulsified.

Toss your clean, dry spinach with the red onion and walnuts. Garnish with raspberries and drizzle with dressing or let guests dress their own salad.

Enough for 3-4 servings. You may have extra dressing- the tragedy. :)
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