Garlic Pizza. Vegan. Easy.

Whenever there is a big sporting event on television, like, say, the Superbowl, I enjoy creating a meal of vegan “football” food, even it is just Alan and me at home to enjoy it.  While I wouldn’t exactly call it healthy, at least there is no animal fat or cholesterol. And, hey, it’s a holiday, right?

Garlic pizza - vegan

#Vegan Superbowl: Spicy Buffalo “Wings,” Mandarin Orange “Chicken,” Potato Skins, Vegan Garlic Dressing. Oh, and my veggies too!

My meal plan for the day included potato skins, spicy Buffalo “wings,” and Mandarin orange “chicken” nuggets. Oh, and I didn’t skip the vegetables. Raw carrots, cauliflower, and broccoli with a little ranch dressing for dipping. And pizza! Nothing like vegan pizza on game day.

There is only so much room in the belly, though. Because we were at home, we didn’t have a spread of appetizers to nibble on all day. Instead, the meal that you see above was for dinner. And I knew that as much as I love pizza, it would have just been too much.

So, that meant we got have pizza for dinner the next day! I decided to try something a little different and skip the regular pizza sauce. Instead I used olive oil infused with a lot of garlic and fresh slices of tomato. Add mushrooms and carmelized onions, I have to say… It. Was. Great!

garlic pizza

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Garlic Pizza. Vegan. Easy.
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Easy and fast, this delicious vegan pizza uses olive oil infused with garlic and sliced tomatoes instead of pizza sauce.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American/Italian
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • Pizza Crust - I used Trader Joes crust. You can make your own if you like.
  • 8 cloves garlic, minced
  • ⅛ cup olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 large tomato, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup vegan cheese (I used Daiya mozzarella)
  • ¾ cup mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
Instructions
  1. Carmelize the onions in the olive oil. This takes about 45 minutes, so do it first. Find great instructions for carmelizing onions here.
  2. Add the minced garlic and salt to the ⅛ cup olive oil and set aside.
  3. Preheat the oven (and pizza stone if you use one) to 450 degrees
  4. Roll out the crust to your desired thickness (flour the board first)
  5. Take the pre-heated pizza stone out of the oven and transfer the pizza crust to it.
  6. Spoon the garlic oil onto the crust and spread evenly over the crust.
  7. Spread the sliced tomatoes over the oil.
  8. Add the "cheese," spreading it evenly over the pizza
  9. Add the mushrooms and top with the carmelized onions
  10. Bake at 450 for 15-20 minutes, until the cheese is bubbly and the crust is golden brown.

 garlic pizza

So as 49er fans, Alan and I were disappointed in the outcome of the game. I was also disappointed in the commercials. With the exception of a few (God made farmers was awesome), I thought they were too violent, yet still bland, and in some cases just gross. As I read on another blog, when did it become uncomfortable to watch the Superbowl with younger kids in the room? Anyway, if you know me, you can probably guess my favorite commercial. And if you can’t guess, just watch it.

So, if you watched the Superbowl, what did you snack on? Did you have a favorite commercial?

Awesome Vegan Athlete: Arian Foster

When I decided to write an Awesome Vegan Athlete series, I chose to start with Arian Foster of the Houston Texans for several reasons. For one, football season is just wrapping up, so this is a good time to write about Arian’s success during the regular season. Another reason was that I loved his attitude. He did his research, decided that a plant based diet was the way to go for optimum health, and he was not going to be deterred by anyone’s opinion. And finally, I discovered that he is a graduate of Mission Bay High School in San Diego, which is where my husband Alan when to school. We’re almost related!

When Arian Foster announced that he was following a vegan diet, he had a lot of doubters, including his teammates.  In a sport known for a carnivore spirit, and in Texas of all places, land of 10 gallon hats and 16 ounce steaks, Arian was definitely going against the grain when he chose to give up eating animal products. Linebacker and teammate Brian Cushing told him, “If this doesn’t work I’m going to kick your ass!”

Arian just smiles at this and other comments. He says that suddenly, everyone he knows is a nutritionist and is worried about his protein intake. “No one ever cared before,” he has stated, “but now they do.”

Before the start of the 2012 NFL season, Arian spent a lot of time with real nutritionists. He had done his research and made the decision to follow a plant based diet, but he wanted to do it correctly.  He knew he had a requirement for more calories, not just from protein, but from fat and carbohydrates as well, than most people. He didn’t want to lose weight, and most particularly, didn’t want to lose muscle. He stated, “I didn’t do this blindly. I knew what I was doing.”

Arian’s path toward a vegan diet began in high school, when he saw a documentary that affected him. He says he didn’t change his diet then, but knew that he wanted to even then. The idea of heart disease and young people with diabetes shocked him. He assumed that being in shape for football required that he eat meat. He first thought that he would give it up when he quit football, but after more research Arian realized that it was possible to get adequate nutrition from a plant based diet.

Arian says that he understands why people have such strong feelings about diet. “We’re emotionally attached to food. Think about every big holiday, it’s attached to food. Christmas, Thanksgiving, birthdays, holidays, it’s all about food.” He also says that it’s not that he doesn’t love hamburgers. It is just that he can think it through and know that the taste of those hamburgers isn’t worth the potential damage they can do. He says, “the bad food we eat, it stays in your body, in your heart.”

Now, Arian isn’t perfect. He ate some chicken back in November, and it was reported like he’d been caught cheating on his taxes. He wasn’t worried about it. “I felt like I needed a piece of chicken. I will stick with my plant based diet.” That’s good enough for me. He is eating a mostly vegan diet, and that is good for his health, the environment, and the animals.

So, I’m sure your asking the big question: Did his vegan diet fuel him as well as a diet that included animal products?  Oh, I don’t know, let’s check out his stats:

In 2011, Arian ran for 1,224 yards, with 10 touchdowns (he did miss three games due to injury). In 2012, he ran for 1,424 yards and had 15 touchdowns. Sounds pretty good to me! (Full stats here.)

While this is the first in my Awesome Vegan Athlete Series, I did write about another Awesome Vegan Athlete, Timothy Bradley last year. I plan to make this an ongoing series. What Awesome Vegan Athlete would you like to read about?