This vegan white pizza is so cheesy and full of flavour that you won't even miss the tomato, I promise.
This type of pizza is what is typically called a "pizza bianca" in Italy, which translates to "white pizza", as they don't have tomato as a base. They used to never be my first pick as a child, as what "no tomato" actually translated to was "no fun" in my mind. Mushrooms on pizza where also never my first pick, but what I've come to realise now is that mushrooms weren't the problem, rather how they tasted alongside the tomato base. In fact, what I mainly didn't realise then is that not using tomatoes - which have a totally delicious, but also totally overpowering flavour - actually allows for a lot of other flavours to shine. It's the same case with vegetables like courgettes, courgette flowers and aubergines - which you can easily sub in place of the mushrooms in this pizza. If you toss them in a little oil and garlic, use a good mozzarella alternative, add some herbs and are generous with olive oil, the flavours will shine through so much. I promise you won't miss the tomato base.
Cheese wise, I like to use Mozzarisella. It doesn't have an artificial taste, it doesn't clump and it actually melts and browns. I've tried many vegan cheeses and it is, without a doubt, the best out there I have tried. I tend to get mine on Ocado or at Planet Organic, but I've seen it in a lot of health food shops as well.
30 mins (+rising)
450g bread flour
1 ½ tsp fast action yeast
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp olive oil
800g mixed wild mushrooms, sliced or torn apart (shiitake, oyster, trumpet etc)
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
300g vegan mozzarella, thinly sliced (we used mozzarisella)
5g fresh thyme
In a large bowl or stand mixer combine flour, yeast and salt. If mixing by hand, pour the wet ingredients in and incorporate until just combined. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for 12 minutes, until it’s soft and springy. If using a stand mixer, add the wet ingredients and mix on high for 8 minutes.
Place the dough back into the bowl and cover with a damp towel or cling film. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about an hour.
Once risen, tip the dough back onto a surface and divide it into 4 portions. Form each piece into a ball, then place them onto a tray - a couple cm away from each other. Cover with a damp tea towel or cling film again, and let rise for another hour.
Preheat the oven to 230˚C. Place one dough ball onto a lightly floured surface and use a rolling pin to roll it out as thinly as possible. Transfer the rolled out base onto an oiled baking tray or pizza stone. Drizzle the base with olive oil.
In a large bowl, combine mushrooms, garlic, salt and 2 tbsp olive oil and toss together. Spread ¼ of the mushrooms onto the first pizza base, layering it with 50g of vegan mozzarella.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Repeat with the remaining dough until all your pizzas are baked.
Valentina is our Food Creative, who dreams up our tasty dishes and recipes for our social channels. She has loads of experience cooking up a storm in Italian kitchens, so it’s no surprise she can’t live without good-quality olive oil (don’t come between her and her olive oil) and fresh pasta.