Veggie Focaccia Pizza with Red Hemp Pesto
Yeast Risen Whole Wheat Focaccia Pizza with a Roasted Red Pepper, Sundried Tomato & Hemp Pesto, topped with Mixed Olives, Bell Peppers & Plant-Based Cheese
Total: 2 hours & 30+ minutes
Rising Time: 100-120 minutes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 8 slices
Allergens: tree nuts, wheat
This health conscious pan-baked pizza utilizes whole wheat flour and ground flaxseed in the yeast risen focaccia dough for added nutrients and dietary fiber. Omega-3 rich hemp hearts are combined with roasted red peppers and sundried tomatoes for a quick and delicious home-made pizza sauce seasoned with garlic and herbs. Top it all off with your choice of mixed olives, bell peppers and vegan cheese, and you have yourself a delicious plant-based pizza that anyone can enjoy!
Make your own pizza at home with this easy to follow focaccia pizza recipe!
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- ¾ cups of warm (110F) water
- 1 tablespoon of agave nectar
- ½ 0.25 oz package of instant dry yeast
- 1 cup of whole wheat flour
- ½ cup of all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed
- 1 tablespoons of hemp or extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- Oil for greasing the bowl and top of the dough
- 8 oz jar of roasted red peppers, not including the oil
- 2 oz of sundried tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons of hemp hearts
- 1 clove of garlic
- ½ teaspoon of dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons of hemp oil
- 0.5 oz or 20 leaves of fresh basil
- 1 tablespoon of water
- Oil spray for the baking tray
- ½ cup of mixed olives, sliced
- ½ cup of mixed bell peppers, diced
- 1 cup of vegan mozzarella cheese
- 1 tablespoon of hemp hearts
- Fresh basil leaves
1.) Begin by heating some water in a microwave or tea pot. Test the temperature with a thermometer and make sure it's at 110-112F. This activates the yeast. Add the agave and stir to combine.
2.) Activate: Add the instant dry yeast and stir. Seeing bubbles means the yeast is activated! Measure out all your dry ingredients, 1 tablespoon of oil and salt and then add them all into the same bowl.
3.) Kneading process: Stir with a wooden spoon or spatula to mix everything into a rough looking dough. With gloved hands to avoid sticky fingers knead the dough in the bowl until it comes together more. Dump the whole thing onto your cleaned countertop and begin working the dough for about 5 minutes to develop the gluten (this is crucial in making the dough rise). Add a little bit of flour at a time if the dough seems sticky. Once everything comes together uniformly, shape it into a ball.
4.) First rise: Place the ball of dough in a heatproof bowl greased with oil and top it with more oil. Make sure to smear the oil all over the dough so that it isn't dry and it doesn't develop cracks. Proofing: cover the bowl with plastic wrap, place it in a warm location (I set mine beside my stovetop range) and let the dough rise for 1 hour, or until it has nearly doubled in size.
5.) Second rise: Knead the dough again on a lightly floured surface for about a minute. Using a rolling pin, flatten it out into a rectangle, and transfer it onto an oiled baking tray. Cover the flattened dough with a damp towel and set it aside in the same location as before when you did the first rise, then leave it for another hour to rise a second time.
6.) Make the sauce: While waiting for the last rise, make the pesto by combining the roasted red peppers, sun dried tomatoes, hemp hearts, hemp oil, oregano, garlic and basil in a food processor. Pulse until everything is smooth. Thin it out with a tablespoon of water or so if you desire a more spreadable sauce.
7.) Gather your toppings: Set aside the sauce, slice your olives, dice your peppers, get your vegan cheese and hemp hearts ready for garnishing your pizza. Preheat an oven to 400°F.
8.) Assemble: Once the dough has almost doubled in size again, poke holes using your fingers to form the indents you normally see in a focaccia, brush the whole thing with the red pesto, add your vegetables, then top with plant-based cheese.
9.) Bake the pizza for 18-20 minutes in the middle rack of the oven. For some extra garnishes on your pizza, sprinkle hemp hearts, basil, chili flakes and nutritional yeast on top. Move it onto a cutting board, slice, serve and enjoy!
- If you have a bread maker or stand mixer with a dough hook on hand, you should definitely use it. It will be faster in and not as messy.
- Keeping your hands or surfaces lightly floured and/or oiled will help prevent sticking.
- Use a large enough bowl or container during the first rise so that there is room for it to double in size.
- If you’re not working on the dough, make sure to cover it all times with plastic film or a damp cloth to prevent it from drying out.
- What is proofing? Is a step in baking that activates the yeast in the leavened dough. The yeast consumes the carbohydrates in the dough, causing it to ferment and expel gas, making the dough rise.
- Can I make this recipe with all whole wheat flour, and no all-purpose wheat flour? Yes! This version will have more texture but will taste just as amazing.
- I want to pre-make the dough for the next day, can I let the dough rise in the fridge overnight instead? Yes! I’ve tried this before and it was successful. The yeast in the dough will remain dormant in cold temperatures so expect it to only rise a little overnight in the fridge. Starting from the “first rise” step, take it out of the refrigerator and place the bowl of unrisen dough in a warm place for about 2-2.5 hours and let it almost double in size. Continue with the next steps.
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