Today's recipe is definitely "veganish"--the version you see above is not vegan because I used actual cheese, but you could easily veganize this one with little trouble. Simply swap out the mozzarella with Daiya or some other vegan shred and the Parmesan could be swapped out with a vegan parm (you can even make your own using FatFreeVegan's Almond Parmesan recipe). There are lots of recipes out there for vegan ricotta cheese and mozzarella, as well as Parmesan. You could even go with a Pangrattato AKA "Poor Man's Parmesan" (see this favorite that I've veganized in the past and will again sometime on this blog for a fancy breadcrumb substitute for the Parmesan).
This is a recipe in three parts. I made a whole wheat crust from my adaptation of the no-knead bread dough from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day, which has the Master Recipe posted online. This recipe calls for a mix of AP and whole grain flour, but my adaptation is all whole wheat (the softer, white whole wheat). The small amount of added oil and sweetener help soften the texture. I use this for pizza crust (I generally get two crusts out of the batch of dough below, but if you're into deep dish, your mileage will vary). I also make pitas with it (oven temperatures and dough prep make a difference, but that's a tutorial post).
I also want to note here that this would normally have actual onion in the filling and the sauce, but I had one onion in my kitchen and when I cut it open it was nasty (there's always one in the bag, isn't there?). So, feel free to use onion if you have it and consider leaving out the onion powder, although I find that it does add some different type of onion flavor and sweetness. It's a handy pantry item to have.
Virtually no knead bread
Adapted from Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day
3 3/4 cups White Whole Wheat Flour*
2 Tablespoons of Vital Wheat Gluten**
1 Tablespoon of active dry yeast***
1.5 teaspoons (1/2 T) of salt
2 cups warm water (not hot--don't kill your yeast!)
1 Tablespoon agave, honey, maple syrup, or sugar
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Put the dry ingredients in a bowl. Stir the wet together in your mixing cup (I often dissolve the salt in there too). Stir the wet into the dry. I generally use a spoon for this, just making sure I stir until all of the loose flour is worked in. I have been known to grab the dough and roll it in the bowl to get the last bits. You'll have a somewhat shaggy dough that seems too soft. It's not. Cover it with a kitchen towel or with plastic wrap and leave it alone in a warm spot in your kitchen for two hours or until doubled. As you can see in the middle picture, the dough will show air pockets when it's ready to go.
*If you have a Kroger nearby, their brand is awesome and about 1/2 the cost of King Arthur and slightly less than Gold Medal. If I have a choice between KA and GM, I go with KA, even though the price is higher. The texture is lighter. I would not go with all regular whole wheat here (the old-school kind) just because of the texture. White whole wheat has the same fiber and nutrient density of whole wheat with a much lighter texture. I use it in place of AP flour these days.
**Vital wheat gluten is the protein part of wheat flour. It's what seitan is made of! It is also used in a lot of commercial baked goods as it not only helps ensure a better structure to the bread but it also extends shelf life. Obviously, if you are gluten intolerant, this recipe is not for you.
***I prefer SAF Instant Yeast or Bob's Red Mill Active Dry Yeast. I keep mine in a jar in the refrefrigerator. If you buy single packets of yeast, this is a bit more than a single packet, but less than two packets. I would go with one packet and simply extend the rising time. If you bake a lot, though, I'd say get the big bag of yeast. It's cheaper and I get better results from it. It lasts a good while in the refrigerator or freezer.
1 teaspoon of olive oil
2 cloves of minced garlic
pinch of crushed red pepper
pinch of fennel seed
pinch of salt
Put the olive oil in a non-stick skillet and heat the spices and garlic in it until fragrant. Then, add:
4 cups chopped fresh broccoli (or frozen if that's what you've got)
2/3 cup to 1 cup of diced bell peppers in color(s) of your choice (these can be frozen to, if necessary)
2 Tablespoons of water
Stir this around a bit and cover. Let steam for approximately 5 minutes. Allow this to cool and add to a mixing bowl that contains:
4 ounces of shredded, part skim mozzarella (or vegan sub)
1 ounce (1/3 cup) shredded Parmesan cheese (or vegan sub)
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. onion powder
2 t. Italian seasoning
Salt and pepper to taste
While this cools and your bread dough is doing its thing, make this simple marinara:
Olive oil for the pan (1 teaspoon or less)
2 cloves minced garlic (I know, I can't use just one)
pinch of fennel seed
pinch of crushed red pepper
1 Tablespoon of onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon of Italian seasoning
2 cans of diced tomatoes and their juice
2 Tablespoons of balsamic vinegar (get something that is at least as good as Pompeian brand, but you don't have to use your crazy expensive stuff)
Saute the garlic, fennel and red pepper with a little salt like you did before. Once that is fragrant, throw in the tomatoes and hit it with an immersion blender (you can see mine above). If you don't have an immersion blender, puree the tomatoes first, then add to the pan. This results in a slightly chunkier texture than just opening a can of tomato sauce, but if that's all you've got, make do. Add the dry spices and vinegar and taste it. Add additional seasonings (salt, pepper, more heat) and let this simmer on low for a bit. Put a lid on it so you don't get tomato splatter.
To assemble, divide your dough in half, as shown in the picture above. Put half the dough on a floured board and divide this into fourths. Roll each ball out into an oval and place approximately one cup of filling along the inside. You can kind of shape this where you want it on the dough. Pull over one side, gently and tuck the edges. Place on a greased baking sheet. I got five calzones out of this recipe, but you may be able to get all of the filling in just four, depending on how thin you roll out the dough and so on. Five is a lucky number, though, and who doesn't want an extra calzone to split later? For number five, I just took my second blob of dough out, divided in fourths, and balled the 3/4s of dough together and put in a zip lock bag that went in the fridge. Now, anytime this week or so that I need a small baguette or some breadsticks, I can just use that dough for that. Awesome, huh?
Spray with a little olive oil and cover with your kitchen towel. Let rest for 20-30 minutes as you preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes.
Angel lives in Camden, Arkansas where she writes stuff and sometimes sends it out to other people to read. She used to grade papers, but not anymore. Check out her main site to see what she's up to lately.