It is my first month of my dairy-free life. I discovered that I have a strong intolerance to milk and most milk products. The funny thing is that people ask me if I’ve lost weight but what really happened is that I deflated. I’m no longer bloated. Milk intolerance could also be why I get migraines. I wonder if I stop drinking milk whether my migraines will go away. So far giving up milk was a good idea. It’s a matter of experimenting, finding the right products, and making other adjustments. The good news is that dairy alternatives exist. Other readers here may be giving up milk due to a vegan lifestyle or allergies among other reasons. One of my favorite food is BBQ Chicken Pizza.
So far, the best cheese replacement that I found was Lisanatti Foods Cheese Alternative products that sold for about $3.99 a bag at New Seasons Market. Their products are vegetarian and they have an almond milk cheese and soy cheese options. The company delivered their promises. The cheese products melted well and did not have the weird soy smell that I assumed. In fact, I made a pizza for a potluck and no one could tell that a cheese alternative was used. I received surprised looks when I told them what was used instead.
Making the pizza. Here’s the fun part. With the dough, I like a simple, straightforward easy recipe with good results and here is mine. I like the fact that I can leave it overnight in the fridge. If I need it sooner, I like to put it in a oven with the oven light on, especially when the weather gets colder. By the way, I shared this recipe with a friend who told me that her husband loves homemade pizza, especially a really good dough. She wants to make it for him. I think I may have helped someone’s marriage.
Pizza Dough (makes one 12-inch pizza or two thin n crispy crusts)
3 cups flour
1.5 cups lukewarm water
1 tsp fine salt
2 tbsp olive oil
3 tsp active dry yeast
1 tsp vital wheat gluten (optional)
Preparation: In a bowl add flour, salt and dry yeast. Add water and stir to mix. Add olive oil and knead to a dough for about 10 minutes. Add flour or water as necessary to make dough. Let the dough rise in a clean oiled bowl in a warm place for 2 hours or refrigerate overnight.
For the pizza: It helps to have a baking stone. I love mine because it absorbs moisture and makes the pizza crispy. I also use the stone to make baguettes. If you don’t have one, no worries, you can still make it but I suggest lowering the temperature to 425 and baking it for 20 minutes or until the pizza dough is golden brown and cheese melted.
Pizza dough at room temperature
2 chicken breasts
4 slices cooked bacon, broken into pieces
1/2 tsp pepper
1 cm red onion (sliced)
1/2 packet of Soy Sation Cheddar, Jack, and Mozzarella Cheese Alternative
1/2 sprig of cilantro (chopped)
Preheat the oven with the pizza stone in the oven. The pizza stone needs to be hot otherwise the pizza will stick to it.
On a pizza peel or cookie sheet sprinkle cornmeal and roll out pizza on it. Poke a few tiny holes with a fork.
In a pan, marinade chicken with BBQ sauce and 1/2 tsp pepper and leave for 20 minutes. Bake chicken at 400 for 20-30 minutes. Cube the chicken and set aside.
On the stretched pizza dough, spread 2 tbsp barbeque sauce, sprinkle pepper and oregano. Spread soy cheese and top with the remaining ingredients.
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Then using a pizza peel or a cookie sheet slide the pizza directly on the pizza stone. Bake for about 7-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown.