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Turnpike Pizza/daiya cheese/tester recipes/frito misto

Posted Jan 10 2010 12:23am

Turnpike Pizza with a homemade side of broccolini and seitan.

Sometimes things just don't turn out the way you expect. I had good intentions of making frito misto for the second time last night to try to improve my results so I could post a recipe, but I waited too late to start cooking, and lack of sleep caught up with me. "Can't we just get a pizza or something," I moaned, as I tried to picture myself washing, cutting , mixing and cooking. Now, how many times has that happened to you? Be honest.

We could have gotten pizza from Pizza Pi, a known source of vegan-only pizzas, but I wanted to see if the pizza place down the street could actually come through with the vegan pizza they promised when they first opened. He ordered. We waited. He went to pick up the pie.

I took one look at the pizza, covered with a thick layer of melted cheese, and groaned, "This can't be vegan. I'm not eating it."

"But they said it was 100% vegan. They swore it was," said my husband. Then I noticed a spot of flattened, crispy cheese, and remembered Daiya cheese gets like that if over-heated. (The pizza really is made with Daiya.) So I took a bite. This is the pizza that floated before my eyes the day I decided to be vegan — back in the days when I used to order EXTRA cheese. But that was then and this is now. Now, this thick melted layer of cheesy, stretchy richness was just too much ... too much ... too much like CHEESE. It made me feel a little sick. I realized I'd come to prefer my pizza covered in VEGGIES with just a smidgen of "cheese." This pizza had too few veggies and too much cheese. (My son, who got the cold leftovers when he got home from work, thought it was really good.)

And then there was the crust. Turnpike Pizza is promoted as "real New York-style pizza" or at least "real East Coast pizza." It's been an awfully long time since I've had any such thing but the crust brought back memories not of pizza, but of Philadelphia soft pretzels! In fact, it tasted just like a soft pretzel. It was very white and very smooth. Maybe smooth is the wrong word but it wasn't the bubbly, scorched and chewy brick-oven crust of my dreams.

Okay, I realize I may have just described what you consider a fantastic pizza, and if you live in Seattle you might want to rush over to Turnpike Pizza in Green Lake and order one. What do I know.

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Testing recipes for Celine and Joni



We've been testing some really delicious recipes lately. Above you see BBQ beans that my son and I loved. My husband liked them but was, in my opinion, unaccountably less enthusiastic than I. Believe me, they were great.



Everyone, including unsuspecting company, loved these. They look like ordinary potato wedges but they're not. They're special and addictive. Amazing and fabulous.



Above you see the BBQ beans, the wedgies and a side of kale. Ever since I read about beans on toast at Haiku Tofu I'd been wanting some, and the BBQ beans were just perfect atop a slice of toasted sourdough. I think I'll keep to myself the number of times I enjoyed this combo.



This is an excellent lentil and quinoa salad. It surprised me by being much more delicious than I imagined.



Oh my. I love kale and eat it a lot, but this was amazing. Buy the cookbook when it comes out just for this smoky dish!



These muffins had both carrots and sweet potato. My granddaughter gobbled hers up.

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New version of an old favorite



We love the sweet chili lime tofu with collards recipe from "Vegan Yum Yum" but when my husband proposed making it the other night I said I'd had tofu for lunch, and didn't want to eat soy again. He was disappointed until I suggested making it with chickpeas, instead. It was just as great with the beans, and served over rice.



Here's my first frito misto effort - not quite good enough to post the recipe. The cauliflower crust was a little too grainy, and the sauce too tomato-y. When I added the sauce to the cauliflower, the grainy quality disappeared and the the cauliflower tasted really good - but not good enough. I'll try again tonight.

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Spam attack (the electronic variety)

I've decided to add a word recognition step to leaving comments because I recently encountered some objectionable spam. Someone using the name Disa left a large number of links to porn sites on a number of my posts. The links were in Chinese characters so I used Google translator to translate the phrases. I apologize to anyone who may have followed the links to pornographic pages before I saw and removed them. I hope this won't discourage anyone from leaving comments - I love reading your thoughts.

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You can enter a comment to win a copy of "Vegan Cupcakes Take over the World" at Vegan Family Style.
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