February 14, 2018 Healthy Eats Vegan Butternut Squash Pizza Let me start off by saying, we are not vegan. But, over the past year, I’ve read too many books and watched too many documentaries that have convinced me that cutting back my animal protein intake is a good decision for my long term health. Heck, I’ve seen the benefits first hand and they are truly incredible. Here’s the short version of the story—several years ago, my dad was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He had surgery and 8 weeks of intensive radiation and guess what? There were still traces of cancer. He had read “The China Study” and was convinced that cutting out animal protein could help turn off the cancer cells’ growth. His doctors told him it wouldn’t help, but it wouldn’t hurt either, so he went for it. After going completely vegan for several months, he had his next check up and his doctors were in disbelief. They couldn’t find any traces of the cancer. Today, he’s still cancer free! He’s living proof that our diets directly impact our health, and if you’re not convinced, pick up the book or watch the documentary “Forks Over Knives“. It still bothers me that his doctors didn’t recommend any nutrition plan, but that’s a whole different subject that I get heated about and don’t really want to get into right now because the whole point of this post was to share this yummy recipe for vegan pizza! “Let food be thy medicine.” -Hippocrates If you’ve ever eaten at a True Food Kitchen, that’s where I got the inspiration. They have a butternut squash pizza that’s totally vegan and out of this world. I’d been wanting to make it at home for a long time and finally did. Guys, it was insanely good! Rob’s worry with vegan dishes is that he won’t be full, but we were both stuff and satisfied. So much so that he asked for it to be on regular rotation in the dinner menu! It’s easy to make, doesn’t require a lot of ingredients and is pretty cheap when you think about it—an onion, a bunch of kale, a few cloves of garlic, butternut squash and pizza dough! The only investment is the vegan almond ricotta (about $8), which is delicious by the way! I’ve been brainstorming more ways to use that and I’m thinking a vegetable lasagna might be pretty tasty! Vegan Butternut Squash Pizza Ingredients butternut squash, you won’t use the whole thing 1 white onion, thinly sliced 6 cloves garlic, minced 2 cups chopped lacinato kale red pepper flakes pizza dough, store-bought or homemade (this recipe makes enough for 2 large pizzas or 4 small ones) Kite Hill almond milk ricotta olive oil S&P Directions If making homemade pizza dough, make this several hours before so it is has time to rise and rest. In a saute pan, heat oil over medium low heat and saute onions for 8 minutes until soft and starting to caramelize. Add garlic, kale and red pepper flakes and saute for about 5 mintues. Season with salt to taste. Thinly slice butternut squash. Preheat oven to 450 degrees and top pizza dough with onion-kale mixture and top with thinly sliced butternut squash. Drizzle top with olive oil, salt and pepper Cook for 12 minutes. Add dollops of the ricotta and cook another 3-5 minutes until crust is lightly browned and crisp. Serve hot and enjoy! BTW, quinoa “fried rice”, and tangled noodle salad.