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Pizza Toppings: Simple/Elaborate, Traditional/Unusual


stagis
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All fruits are vegetables but not all vegetables are fruits.

Hmmm... interesting. I did a little digging, and from what I can gather there is no particularly clear botanical definition of "vegetable." I did find, this, however, which said:

A berry is defined as "a fleshy fruit formed from one compound ovary containing one or many seeds" that does not resemble a pepo (melon) or pome (apple). That nets you tomato again. Tomatoes are botanically berries. The cite for this can be found here.

This is somewhat muddied by the fact that "vegetable", as people understand the word when talking about edible plants, does not have a botanical definition. "Vegetables" as they are referred to are defined by their use rather than by any inherent feature of the particular plant, and it is in this group that people most often place tomatoes.

The definition I have always used was something like this: fruit = the ripened seed-bearing part of a plant when fleshy and edible; vegetable = herbaceous plant cultivated for an edible part, as roots, stems, leaves or flowers.

Your point about eggs and cheese coming from animals is well made, of course, although the whole notion of "vegetarian" seems a bit nebulous to me as it has so many permutations and the exact meaning of "vegetable" is not entirely clear. Perhaps it would be more accurate if more clumsy to say something like "voluntary herbivore."

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Last night's grilled pizza was topped with feta, kalamata olives, caramelized onions and a half handful of pine nuts and Parmaggiano Reggiano.

I'm not veg but my lady is so I know what you are going through as far as hitting the veggie wall goes.

Caramlized onions sound delightful. Hmmmm.... now I have some really delightful things to cook. Will post an update tomorrow

Monica Bhide

A Life of Spice

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I tend to be fairly straightforward with these classifications. Dealing with the organic world there seem to be 3 basic divisions, animal (Consume oxygen and release CO2, usually mobile) plant (Consume CO2 and release oxygen, generally immobile) and fungus (I'm keeping this fairly broad, not going into microbiology with the yeasts, bacteria and blue-green algae). If it is a derived from a plant, it's a vegetable. If it comes from animal sources, it's, well, animal (OK, meat). This includes fish and poultry.

And yes, mushrooms are not veggies, fungi are more closely related to animals than plants. They consume O2 and release CO2. They also tend to be immobile.

I consider the ovo/lacto veggie arguments are to somehow rationalize the consumption of non vegetable foods by folks who still want to label themselves vegetarians. I don't buy it. I'm a bovo porco vegetarian, a veg who also consumes beef and pork. :wacko:

So, while I consider putting tomatoes on a veggie pie fine, cheese and bacon aren't gonna cut it. As for mushrooms, you decide how fine you want to draw distinctions.

Of course this is all by opinion, I could be wrong... :wink:

As for me, I've been placed in a situation where I have no choice but to consider the local pizza joint's "Portabella Special" for dinner. Thin crust, fresh made tomato sauce, buffalo mozz, sliced portabellas, sliced red onions and basil infused olive oil drizzeled on top prior to serving.

=Mark

Give a man a fish, he eats for a Day.

Teach a man to fish, he eats for Life.

Teach a man to sell fish, he eats Steak

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I consider the ovo/lacto veggie arguments are to somehow rationalize the consumption of non vegetable foods by folks who still want to label themselves vegetarians.  I don't buy it.  I'm a bovo porco vegetarian, a veg who also consumes beef and pork.  :wacko:

Hee! I have no idea what I'd call myself, then...

Actually, most "vegetarians" tend to define their eating habits by what they don't eat rather than by what they do eat, so it seems like any term for one of these dietary pracices that is defined by inclusion rather than exclusion is bound to run into trouble.

As for me, I've been placed in a situation where I have no choice but to consider the local pizza joint's "Portabella Special" for dinner.  Thin crust, fresh made tomato sauce, buffalo mozz, sliced portabellas, sliced red onions and basil infused olive oil drizzeled on top prior to serving.

[sARCASM]No choice! Man... that sounds like a fate worse than death. You might as well slit your wrists now and get it over with[/sARCASM]

:biggrin:

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I am making pizza for dinner tonite and could use some vegetarian topping suggestions.. we usually do the same old stuff -- tomato, onion, cheese, green chilie... any suggestions??

I usually offer a couple dozen toppings at my pizza parties (not all vegetarian), and you can find a list here for a Pacific Northwest Egullet event that I hosted in June. Scroll to the bottom. Pictures of the event are on the next page.

Drink!

I refuse to spend my life worrying about what I eat. There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward. --John Mortimera

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Okay so here is what I made: (DAMN i need to buy a digital camera!)

1. Tomato Mozarella and Eggs -- courtsey slkinsey. This one went over well. Although I had to watch it cos I dont have a stone

2. I made a sauce with onions, cashews and cream and used it as a base. The toppings were small pieces of fried indian cheese, mushrooms and peas

3. Sauce for the base was a stirfry chili sauce. Topped with caramelized onions, tomatoes, fresh basil, mushrooms and tons of fresh green chilies

YUM!! Thanks for all the suggestions and just for the record -- I HATE OLIVES :raz:

Monica Bhide

A Life of Spice

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I HATE OLIVES :raz:

Whaaa? :blink::blink::blink:

"I've caught you Richardson, stuffing spit-backs in your vile maw. 'Let tomorrow's omelets go empty,' is that your fucking attitude?" -E. B. Farnum

"Behold, I teach you the ubermunch. The ubermunch is the meaning of the earth. Let your will say: the ubermunch shall be the meaning of the earth!" -Fritzy N.

"It's okay to like celery more than yogurt, but it's not okay to think that batter is yogurt."

Serving fine and fresh gratuitous comments since Oct 5 2001, 09:53 PM

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1. Tomato Mozarella and Eggs -- courtsey slkinsey. This one went over well. Although I had to watch it cos I dont have a stone

Yay! Glad you liked it.

I am getting ready to do a big pizza party for a friend's birthday, so I'll take pictures of my various specialties and try to post.

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One of my favorite pizzas is cheese (guess it's mozzarella..whatever they use at the pizza places), lots of garlic and pineapple. And sometimes add anchovies to it.

And goat cheese, basil and roasted garlic, grape tomatoes

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Monica,

when autumn/winter comes into play, consider doing roasted acorn squash, taleggio or shaved parmesan and rosemary, sea salt and cracked black pepper and topped with a light drizzle of white truffle oil.

Soba

Edited by SobaAddict70 (log)
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Monica,

when autumn/winter comes into play, consider doing roasted acorn squash, taleggio or shaved parmesan and rosemary, sea salt and cracked black pepper and topped with a light drizzle of white truffle oil.

Soba

Sorry to sound like an ignoramus.. but what is white truffle oil??

Monica Bhide

A Life of Spice

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2. I made a sauce with onions, cashews and cream and used it as a base. The toppings were small pieces of fried indian cheese, mushrooms and peas

Monica - Do you mind posting a recipe for this one? It sounds incredibly good. I don't like cashews and it sounds good.

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Sorry to sound like an ignoramus.. but what is white truffle oil??

Truffle oil is olive oil (usually) that has been infused with truffles (usually scraps, I think). Can be a great way to get a little truffle essence into a recipe without breaking the bank.

See here for more information.

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2. I made a sauce with onions, cashews and cream and used it as a base. The toppings were small pieces of fried indian cheese, mushrooms and peas

Monica - Do you mind posting a recipe for this one? It sounds incredibly good. I don't like cashews and it sounds good.

Here it is -- I make the gravy and use that as a base and then add the fried paneer (INdian cheese) and mushrooms and boiled peas. Dont forget to remove the whole spices as you spread the sauce

Cashew Nut Sauce

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

2 tablespoons unsalted cashew nuts

4 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 green cardamom pods

1 black cardamom pods

2 cloves

1 1-inch cinnamon stick

1 bay leaf

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon red chili powder

1 teaspoon coriander powder

1 small red onion, minced

1/2 cup plain yogurt or cream, whipped

Table salt to taste

Water, if needed

1. Soak the cashews in a cup of water for about 20 minutes. Drain and grind to a paste in a food processor. Set aside.

2. In a medium skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Quickly add the green cardamom, black cardamom, cloves, cinnamon stick, bay leaf and minced garlic. Sauté for about 30 seconds.

3. Add the red chili powder, coriander powder and minced onion. Sauté for 2 minutes. If the spice mixture sticks to the pan, add a few tablespoons of water. Continue to sauté until the onions are golden brown, about 7 minutes. Add the cashew nut paste, stir for another minute.

4. Add the yogurt. Mix well. Simmer on low heat until the oil starts to separate from the spice mixture. If you prefer gravy to be thinner, add water.

5. Add the salt and cook for about 2-3 minutes.

Edited by Monica Bhide (log)

Monica Bhide

A Life of Spice

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  • 4 months later...

We're making pizza tonight, and the typical question comes up - what to put on it?

I like my pizza with just a few toppings, and enjoy exploring unusual combinations. Any toppings you can recommend that go unusually well together?

I know a man who gave up smoking, drinking, sex, and rich food. He was healthy right up to the day he killed himself. - Johnny Carson
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Smoked duck breast, carmelized red onion, baby spinach leaves, asiago cheese. A light pesto on the bottom.

My all-time favourite pizza, and one I serve at home all the time for a quick and easy meal.

Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.

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my fav is quattroformaggi

four different types of cheese

YUM

Do not expect INTJs to actually care about how you view them. They already know that they are arrogant bastards with a morbid sense of humor. Telling them the obvious accomplishes nothing.

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my fav is quattroformaggi

four different types of cheese

YUM

The traditional 4, or do you have a personal favourite?

Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.

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One of my favorite pizza topping combos that I recently discovered is:

italian sausage

green olives (not jarred pimento stuffed kind)

can also add fresh tomatoes...

I really love the briny taste of green olives against the sausage, cheese, etc. Have ordered it with a few different people now and they are all hooked!

This has nothing in common with the taste of canned black olives on pizza...

I've had this on restaurant, thin crust, East coast style pizza... haven't tried it on my homemade pie yet. Although, I think I'll make it soon!

"Under the dusty almond trees, ... stalls were set up which sold banana liquor, rolls, blood puddings, chopped fried meat, meat pies, sausage, yucca breads, crullers, buns, corn breads, puff pastes, longanizas, tripes, coconut nougats, rum toddies, along with all sorts of trifles, gewgaws, trinkets, and knickknacks, and cockfights and lottery tickets."

-- Gabriel Garcia Marquez, 1962 "Big Mama's Funeral"

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