Last updated on March 8th, 2021 at 09:07 am
A delicious but easy vegan white pizza with sweet pears, creamy almond ricotta and flavoursome balsamic shallots.
It's pizza time! And it's about time. I haven't posted a pizza recipe since my Easy Za'atar Spiced Pizzas back in 2016. This white pizza, however, was worth the wait. OK, let's do it.
What is White Pizza?
Simply, a white pizza, pizza bianco, is one that doesn't have tomato sauce on it. White pizza is typically covered in ricotta and mozzarella in lieu of tomato sauce and may also be topped with garlic, vegetables or Alfredo sauce.
Why We Love This Vegan White Pizza
I love any pizza but this white pizza is lovely for something different. I think you're going to love it. It's
- easy to make - you can make it even easier by using a store-bought base
- can be made gluten-free by switching the base to a gluten-free one
- creamy and delicious
You'll find full instructions and measurements in the recipe card at the bottom of the post. The following is a summary of the steps to go along with the process photos.
The recipe below makes 3 larger white pizzas or four skillet-sized ones.
First to make the shallots...
Step 1: Heat the oil in a skillet over low - medium heat before adding the onions, water and salt. Cook for around 7-10 minutes or until the onions are beginning to caramelise around the edges. Remember, they will go in the oven with the pizza so they'll cook thoroughly in there.
Step 2: Add the balsamic vinegar and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the vinegar is absorbed. Remove the onions from the heat and set aside.
...and now the pizza
Pizza Steps 1 and 2: Preheat your oven to its hottest setting. Prepare your pizza base. Roll it out on a floured tray (or one sprinkled with fine semolina). Blend up the almond ricotta in a processor and cover your base with a good layer. Next lay the sliced pears down.
Pizza Step 3: Sprinkle the cooked shallots over the top of the pear and add your favourite vegan cheese.
Pop the pizza in the oven for around 7-minutes and...boom. Thank you, Ma'm. When I'm feeling it, which I usually am, I add fresh arugula, a swirl of pomegranate molasses and pistachios. You don't have to, but boy is it good. A splash of balsamic works too.
Tips To Making Your Perfect Pizza
Tip 1: If you have time, make your own dough. The recipe in the recipe card below is enough for 4 medium pizzas.
Tip 2: To stop the pears from oxidising (going brown) after you slice them, place the slices in a small bowl of water with a good squirt of lemon juice.
Tip 3: Pizza loves heat. The hotter you can get your oven, the more flavour you get.
Tip 4: Make it your own! After you make the almond ricotta, you can top it with anything you like.
Alternative Topping Ideas
- Artichoke and lemon zest
- Roasted mushroom and thyme
- Vegan mozzarella and topped with fresh greens
- Dried oregano grated garlic.
I divide the dough in to four parts and individually bag them to freeze in freezer-proof bags. They will freeze for up to 3 months. To thaw, pop the dough on the counter for around 2 to 4 hours.
The short answer is, I wouldn't. While everything on the pizza freezes well separately, the whole pizza gets quite wet during the thawing process...those juicy pears and onions, you know? I freeze my pizza dough and make the pizza from scratch when I'm ready.
That's OK. Soak raw almonds in boiling water for 20 minutes, drain, and continue with the recipe.
Would you like more bread-y things?
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White Pizza with Pear and Balsamic Onions
- 350 ml water lukewarm
- 7 grams active yeast
- 1 tsp raw sugar
- 400 grams 00 flour strong flour
- 100 grams semolina flour
- 1 tsp fine sea salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ cup water +3-4 tbsp
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 and ½ cups blanched almonds
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 1-2 tsp nutritional yeast
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- pinch garlic powder
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp olive oil or vegan buttery spread
- 200 grams small shallots some halved, smaller ones left whole
- pinch fine sea salt
- 2 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp balsamic or red wine vinegar
- 1 pear finely sliced lengthways (see notes)
- ½ cup mozarella (vegan), grated
- 2 tbsp pistachios (optional) crushed
- ⅓ cup arugula (roquette)
- 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses (optional) but so good!
- course sea salt
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- To make the pizza dough stir the water, yeast and sugar together in a bowl or jug and set in a warm space to bloom.
- Combine the flour, semolina and salt in a large mixing bowl, stirring it together to mix well.
- When the yeast is frothy/milk add the olive oil and stir it through and then add the mixture to the flour. Combine the dough together with a spoon until it begins to come together and then tip it out on to a work surface to knead. Don't worry if you have loose floury bits; they will come together when you need the dough.
- Knead by hand for around 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and soft. If you have an electric mixer with a dough hook, knead the dough for around 5 minutes.
- Form the dough in to a ball and place it in a large clean bowl lightly greased with olive oil. Cover it with a clean towel or cling film and sit it in a warm corner to proof for about an hour or until it doubles in size.
- Meanwhile, to make the almond ricotta place all the ingredients in a high-powered blender and blend until smooth, scraping down the sides as needed. Begin with ½ cup of water and add more by the tablespoon as needed to create a smooth cream texture. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- For the caramelised onions, heat the oil in a skillet over low - medium heat before adding the onions, water and salt. Cook for around 7-10 minutes or until the onions are beginning to caramelise around the edges. Remember, they will go in the oven with the pizza so they'll cook thoroughly in there.
- Add the balsamic vinegar and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the vinegar is absorbed. Remove the onions from the heat and set aside.
- Pre-heat your oven to at least 250 C (482 degrees F) (pizza loves heat!) and line a roasting tray with baking paper sprinkled liberally with semolina.
- When the dough has doubled in size, divide it in to 3 or 4 balls and allow each to rest for another 10 to 15 minutes.
- Roll or press a dough ball on to the roasting tray in to a traditional circle or longer shape like mine. I found a cool video showing two different dough stretching techniques from King Arthur Flour here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcEIRm9nczk
- Spread a good amount of your almond ricotta on the base followed by the sliced pear. Sprinkle the balsamic shallots over the top followed by the mozzarella cheese. Pop the pizza in the oven for 7 minutes or until the crust is golden and the cheese is melted and delicious.
- To serve, scatter the pizza with fresh arugula (roquette), chopped pistachios and a swirl of olive oil and pomegranate molasses (completely optional). Sprinkle with a little more sea salt and a crack of pepper. Devour!