Sunday, 10 February 2008

Ducky's culinary school spreads the vegetable love

Nothing says valentine's day like roses and chocolate. Soooo, Ducky's culinary school presents: rose and chocolate pizza, specially concocted for the FatFree Vegan Kitchen's valentine's food extravaganza.
Pizza dough: standard yeasted pizza dough, kinda. We used 300grams chickpea flour, 100 grams whole wheat flour, a pinch of salt, yeast and a tsp of rosewater. Knead. Leave to rise. Knead some more, roll out, sprinkle with more rosewater, a bit of salt and some freshly ground black pepper and then bake at 220C for 15 min. Yes, you bake the pizza dough naked (naked pizza dough, I mean. Naked cook is optional.)

Then, add the sauce, which in this case is a nice little layer of pomegranate molasses. Alternately, one could use dark chocolate shavings, chillies and balsamic reduction, if one were feeling fancy, or even mole sauce if you had some on hand. But the pomegranate molasses was making eyes at me, I swear. Toppings: first layer: Wilted spinach and arugula mixed with 1 tsp of dry roasted coriander seeds and 1 tsp dry roasted cumin seeds, mushed up with a mortar and pestle. second layer: Butternut squash simmered slowly in veg broth and white wine (sub apple cider vinegar if you want) with a tiny little bit of pomegranate syrup added near the end. Pop this back in the oven for a few minutes to let the different layers get aquainted with each other. Then add the romantic layer: sprinkle with a cocoa nibs and decorate with candied rose petals. If you are me, add a bit more black pepper.

That's for valentine's day. Note that at this time of year, what with all the kissing and such, vampires can be a concern. We recommend the following, though not necessarily as part of a romantic dinner:

Side dish: Vampire-be-gone spuds. It's misty and mysterious out tonight, so we thought that just to be on the safe side, we'd make these. Diced potatoes (4), whole cloves of garlic (one head worth), and one of those deceptively hot hungarian peppers, in veg broth, thyme, and smoked paprika. When everything is almost done (the water has almost all evaporated), add a can of chopped tomatoes or several chopped fresh tomatoes, a diced green pepper and a few chopped capers and continue cooking. When everything is actually done, throw in some nutritional yeast and salt to taste. If we hadn't used all the spinach on the pizza, I would have thrown it in these spuds.

Poor Spanky was mostly running about being my kitchen slave for this dinner, chopping things and keeping wine glasses filled and such. I think the role suited him, but he probably disagrees, so we will resume our regular "nice Ducky" programme next week when I'm not trying to impress anyone or ward off the undead.

valentine music for the terminally cynical: leonard cohen. everybody knows.


SusanV said...

I think this has to be the most inventive pizza I've ever seen. I'm really intrigued and will have to try it someday. Thanks for entering it into the Vegetable Love contest.

Melody Polakow said...

Wow.. I can't quite wrap my brain around this.. but would love to try it.. sooo creative! hmmm... You might win my vote for being the most daring and different. I can't even picture how the flavors would meld together and that actually excites me!
(I came here from Susan's contest)...

-W- said...

Wow. This made my mouth water. I can't wait to make it for my sweetie-pie!

sinead said...

tee hee! the idea came from those amazing chickpea and rosewater-based indian desserts. there was a resto i used to go to in montreal where i liked to eat a bit of dessert and then a bite of pumpkin curry, and then a bite of salad... plus, i'm slowly coming around to the idea that chocolate is better as a savory food.

i didn't mention this in the recipe, but this crust works best if you make it fairly thin, or it's too heavy. especially if you make the vamp-be-gone spuds with it.

Shellyfish said...

I'm here checking out the entries in Susan's Veggie Love contest, and was so curious about your pizza I had to check it out. I would really like to try it- it sounds so excellent. I especially like the perhaps unconventional marriage of flavours (the best marriages are generally unconventional).

Vegan_Noodle said...

So unique! And it looks beautiful as well!

Lyra said...

I came here from Susan's site (fat free vegan) and I'm looking forward to reading some more entertaining and creative entries...Definitely an interesting pizza idea. My favorite pizza dough is on Ill try making some kind of chocolate pizza soon, thanks to your inspiring post!