Here is a fantastic topping idea for pizza. A tomato sauce base packed with the heady flavours of Moroccan Spices with toppings of sliced sautéed Aubergine, Chick Peas and Sweet Peppers. And a scattering of peppery wild rocket and watercress.
Cooking has had to take a bit of a back seat for me lately …. as has the blog ….(who knows … where the time goes). What I do know, is that I feel so perfectly comfortable cooking vegan these days, I cannot conceive of ever eating animals ever again. Vegan living is peaceable, and I love it.
One of the reasons I’ve been so busy, is because I have an allotment (community vegetable garden) and growing my own vegetables makes being vegan even easier, it has to be said!
Without boring you with all the details, here is a picture of my allotment. Broad Beans in the foreground, garlic to the left, Apple, Pear and Cherry trees, Gigantes Beans on the right. The strawberry bed is covered, because the starlings have been having a feast. Further down there are potatoes, courgettes, peas, onions, carrots, parsnips and all sorts of cabbages. Fruit bushes (red white and black currants, raspberries, blueberries, gooseberries) and rhubarb. And there’s more besides. Tomatoes in the small polytunnel on the right. Yesterday I planted 12 Florence Fennel bulbs, which will be a first if they don’t bolt Watch this space ….. for fennel recipes … hopefully! 🙂
And here is my best allotment friend, boldly investigating the seed tin. 🙂
So food has to be quick and easy at the moment: Pasta, Briam (Greek vegetable bake) and vegetable stews. The sort of thing you can more or less throw together.
But the other night I fancied Pizza, so this is what I did.
MOROCCAN STYLE PIZZA
Makes 2 x 32 cm. pizzas.
- 500 gms. of your favourite Pizza Dough. (I leave this up to you as you can opt for gluten-free dough which would make this pizza completely gluten-free).
- 2 tbs. olive oil.
- 1 large onion ( 200 gms?) – peeled and finely diced.
- 400 gms. chopped tomatoes ( I used tinned).
- 1 large tomato ( approx. 350 gms. halved and sliced approx. 5 ml. thick).
- 100 – 120 gms. pre-cooked chickpeas.
- 1 sweet pepper : washed, deseeded and sliced, into thin strips.
Moroccan Spice Mix:
- 0.5 tsp. cinnamon powder
- 0.5 tsp. ginger powder
- 0.5 tsp. turmeric powder
- 0.5 tsp. all spice powder
- 0.5 tsp. cayenne pepper + a pinch extra!
- 1 tsp. coriander seeds – finely ground.
- 0.5 tsp. cumin seeds – finely ground.
- 1 tsp. salt.
Mix all spices and salt together.
- 1 large aubergine.
- 1 Large tbs. salt ( I use pink Himalayan Salt).
- 2-4 tbs. olive oil.
- A small handful of freshly chopped parsley.
- Wash and finely slice the aubergine, into round slices 2-3 ml. thick and then lay them out on a clean board, and scatter them with salt.
- Leave for 30 mins. and then rinse, and thoroughly dry using clean kitchen paper.
- This process helps remove any bitter flavour from the aubergine.
- In a wide pan, add 2 tbs. olive oil, and sauté the aubergine slices in batches for 2 mins. on each side. Add a little more oil as necessary. Set aside until ready to use.
Meanwhile, prepare the tomato sauce base:
- In a deep pan, add 2 tbs. olive oil.
- When hot, add the diced onion and sauté for 3 mins.
- Add the spice mix, and sauté for 30 secs. (avoid burning the spices).
- Add the chopped tomatoes.
- Simmer gently, uncovered, for 10 mins.
Construct your pizza:
- Pre-heat the oven to the highest setting : Gas. Mk. 9 / 240 C.
- I found these great pizza trays the other day, with holes in the base, and they worked really well.
- Divide your pizza dough in 2, and roll/stretch it until it fits your pizza tray.
- Spread half the tomato sauce over each pizza dough base.
- Then add the sautéed aubergine slices.
- Next comes the sweet pepper slices and a scattering of chickpeas.
- Top with the sliced tomatoes.
- Add a little freshly chopped parsley.
- Drizzle lightly with olive oil and a scattering of salt and black pepper.
- Place in a very hot oven for 10 -12 mins. (You may want to cook them one at a time).
Serve piping hot with wild rocket and peppery watercress.
This pizza is just as good cold the next day ! 🙂