Hurry Up Vegan: Eggplant, Pepper, and Arugula Tortilla Pizza
March 27, 2012

Eggplant, Pepper, and Arugula Tortilla Pizza | The Full Helping

Wow! Thanks for such great feedback on my homemade vegan creamer! I had no idea that so many others were curious about making a really tasty vegan replacement, too. I also appreciate the tips about TJ’s creamer, hempmilk, and mimicreme! I’ll have to check them out.

Today, I’m back with yet another speedy post. These days, my desire for good taste from my food is rivaled only by my need for meals to be quick and have shorter ingredient lists. As you all know, I was very impressed by my pizza at Graffiato on Friday, and I decided to re-create a shortcut version. This quick eggplant, pepper, and arugula tortilla pizza is my super speedy tribute to the dish–and I think it captures the flavor nicely!

It was the soft, chewy crust that made this pizza truly outstanding, but what I also liked was the fact that it was covered in a roast eggplant puree, rather than old-fashioned red sauce, and then a layer of roasted red peppers, crispy arugula, and lemon. Just the kind of bright flavors and foods that appeal to me.

With far less time on my hands than it would take to knead pizza dough and allow it to rise, I decided to whip up my own version of this pizza yesterday, with two important modifications:

1. Raw peppers instead of roasted. I think roasted peppers would be divine here, but I really love the crunch of raw! And I love the speed of chopping and serving, rather than roasting. Additionally, the water-soluble Vitamin C in the peppers may be present in greater amounts when the peppers are consumed raw.

2. I used an Ezekiel tortilla in lieu of dough. Making homemade pizza dough is a real joy if you have a knack for it. I don’t, alas–or at least I won’t until I have a little more practice–so this is an easy alternative.

The baba ganoush I used as my eggplant spread in this recipe is non-traditional in that I should have charred the eggplant over a flame; that is how classic baba is made, and the taste really is superior (Ela has a good, step-by-step description that is also imbued with fond and sweet memories of her grandmother). That said, it’s easier for me to simply roast the eggplant and get moving, so that’s how I typically cook my baba. Again, the theme of my culinary life right now is healthy shortcuts!

Eggplant, Pepper, and Arugula Tortilla Pizza | The Full Helping

Hurry Up Vegan: Eggplant, Pepper, and Arugula Tortilla Pizza
Recipe Type: main dish, entree
Cuisine: vegan, gluten free optional, soy free, tree nut free
Author: Gena Hamshaw
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 1 serving
Ingredients
  • For the baba ganoush:
  • 1 medium sized eggplant
  • 1 1/2-2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
  • Black pepper to taste
  • For the pizza:
  • 1 large, whole grain or gluten free tortilla
  • 1/2 large bell pepper, cut into matchsticks, or 1/3 cup roasted red pepper slices (you can use jarred!)
  • 1 cup fresh, tightly packed arugula
  • Freshly squeezed lemon juice
Instructions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees. Prick eggplant with a fork and lay it onto a foil-lined baking sheet. Roast for 40-50 minutes, or until it’s collapsing and the skin is charred. Remove the eggplant from the oven and allow it to cool until it’s cool enough to be handled.
  2. When eggplant is cool enough to handle, cut open and scoop all of the flesh into the bowl of a food processor. Add the lemon juice, tahini, garlic, cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper to taste. Process until smooth.
  3. Spread about 1/3 cup baba ganoush onto the tortilla. Layer with bell pepper and arugula. Top with a squeeze of lemon if you like, and enjoy!
Notes
The baba ganoush will make about 1 1/2-2 cups. It can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Use it as a dip, a spread, or a topping for a bowl!

 Eggplant, Pepper, and Arugula Tortilla Pizza | The Full Helping

This cheater’s “pizza” is so good. You can also wrap the tortilla up, and serve this as a wrap, rather than a pizza. Your call! I love that the pizza is piled high with green. Such a healthy homage to comfort food, and—making the baba ganoush aside—it takes minutes to assemble.

Hope you try and love it soon. Till tomorrow, friends!

xo

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    27 Comments
  1. I love using tortillas as pizza crust! I toast them up in a pan before I load it with veggies and it is crispy amazingness–just like thin crust!

  2. This looks perfect, and perfectly simple! I’m a fan of ezekiel products too, though I know many people who consider them dry. I favor Manna bread for it’s taste and moist texture and minimal ingredient list, but it lacks the versatility of the Ezekiel product line. It’s been too long since I roasted an eggplant for baba or otherwise – an unappreciated veg if you ask me.

    On that note, what do you think re. the theory that nightshade vegs cause inflammation? I know there’s plenty of anecdotal info out there, and I know the macrobiotic diet discourages them for this reason. Given my love for red peppers, eggplant and spring/summer tomatoes, this has been on my mind lately. If you get a minute, I’d appreciate you weighing in this issue. Thanks!

  3. it’s been way too long since I’ve tried your creative recipes Gena…your puddings, balls, salads, smoothies, etc. always have such creation (yes, creation) and thought behind them…where do you find your musing?? love this pizza ideas, I’ll bet it’s so tasty

  4. What a coincidence I made the most amazing pizza similar to this today… but since I’m a coeliac I used a gluten free wholemeal brown rice wrap… these wraps I use are amazing and not crumbly at all, plus yeast free and organic. The company is called The Old Time Bakery, but I suspect they may only be available in Australia. I used hummus on the base of my pizza and heaps of baby spinach for the greens, but next time I will try baba and arugula!

    p.s I just remembered how amazing sliced avocado is on top of pizzas

  5. Mmmm looks so good- and simple! And spring-y!
    Unfortunately, no Ezekiel wraps to be found here (oh how lucky you are!) – any advice on a (gluten-free) replacement?
    Even homemade?

    Also, was wondering if you have any Gena advice on travel? I.e. what to pack for quick, on-the-go meals that one can make while in a hotel in a place that’s VERY un-veganfriendly? I think other readers might be interested too? I’m thinking nori…almond buter….any recipe ideas you have would be great!
    Merci beaucoup!!

    • Hi Rebecca, I travel quite a bit to not so vegan friendly places in Europe so I might have a tip or two. First, I always check out the kinds of vegan foods I might be able to get in a specific country and learn how to order them in that language.
      Checking out if your desitination has any vegan restaurants is a good thing to do ahead of time (Paris, Berlin and London have great options these days, while it is easy to order a vegan dish in most Italian restaurants). Knowing what kind of food products you might be able to buy in a supermarket helps too when you are deciding what to pack.
      If you are flying, weight is obviously a major consideration so I keep things to a minimum. I often pack: my favorite nut butters, protein powder, nooch, homemade muesli, homemade energy bars and other ‘healthy’ snack options (and of course my favorite tea). If I am traveling to a hotel, I always ask what they can offer me (soy milk at breakfast, vegan options at dinner). The responses here have always been a mixed bag, but next to the disastors, I have often been pleasantly surprised at people’s efforts even in such carnivore havens as Germany.
      Finally, I scope out what the local grocery stores can offer. I have always been able to find fruits and veggies that I can prepare and eat in my hotel room or apartment. Some places even have things like almond milk or soy milk (though not always unsweetened) and other vegan staples . An integral part of my checked luggage is a swiss army knife to cut up those veggies!!! Likewise for plane flights I plan according to the length of flight and pack some snacks and a wrap or a veggie and bean salad (I don’t really trust the vegan option on overseas flights as they often disappoint on any number of levels. So I pack prepared and hope to be pleasantly surprised).
      Sorry Gena, for taking up so much space here…but I hope this helps a bit!!!

      • Wow, thanks so much for the tips, Nadia and Ellani! And Gena, I’ll definitely check out that travel site. I am gradually learning what works and what doesn’t- would be great to do a travel recipe exchange with others sometime! I will likely be having a lot of protein powder shakes, chia puddings, nori rolls and kelp noodles (still can’t get them here in Paris, but I am the world’s biggest importer from the US I think 🙂 and nut butter galore! Thank goodness for the personal blender (and Choosing Raw of course 🙂 I’m going to the French Riviera, not Mars, so I am sure I will survive! Thanks everyone and have a great day wherever in the world you are! (If it’s NY or California or another vegan, raw-friendly place, I’m VERY jealous 🙂 xx

    • I’ll definitely offer up some tips soon! But you should also check out the Healthy Voyager blog: Carolyn travels all year round and is 100% vegan and full of healthy tips.

      I’ll think on wraps, too.

    • For quick homemade gluten-free pizza bases, I often use chickpea flour or buckwheat flour (say, 1/3 cup), mix in some water (until you get the consistency you want), a dash of salt or herbs/spices and cook like a pancake or flatbread in a frying pan. Polenta would be another awesome idea already mentioned above, though you’d really need a kitchen to make all these, but they do work pretty well as wraps for portable GF travel options. Nori is always awesome. Last time I was travelling I pretty much lived on canned beans with raw veggies, rice cakes, nuts and fruit…

  6. Wow, thanks for referencing my baba ghanoush/grandma post! What an honor.

    And eggplant with tomato and arugula sounds seriously delicious. I’m also thinking arugula pesto over the top of the baba ghanoush for a different way–arugula pesto’s amazing…

    Hope all’s going well for you!
    love
    Ela

  7. Great recipe. and I too have struggled with the Food For Life brown rice wraps even wanting to write the company to complain how they *always* crumble! then I discovered heating them up in a toaster oven (or in a skillet) for a couple minutes. Makes them way more pliable. And if you keep them in there for awhile, they get crispy and you can cut them up like pita chips! But nowadays I’m mostly a collard green wrap lover.

  8. I love your “cheater’s pizza”. I am all about the shortcuts! Funny you used the title hurry up vegan…I was looking over an old cookbook reviews post and ages ago I reviewed a cookbook with that title!

  9. I love the ease of this recipe. I try to avoid gluten, but I can always swap in some onion bread, a gluten-free tortilla, or even a coconut wrap. My mind is spinning with other places to use the babaganoush. I’ve never made it.

  10. mmm baba ganoush! haven’t had that in awhile. i’d love to make my own, garlic free. i know another base that would be great for this, a chickpea socca! gluten-free! there are GF wraps from food for life that are NOT sprouted, they have some weird starches in there, not as much of a whole food. i hate that they make us GF folk have to have fillers when everyone else gets a whole food. so i do make my own when possible. or you could even spread this on a collard leaf, nature’s own wrap.

    • I want to love the Brown Rice tortillas. I really do. But they are so crumbly! I agree, GF options should be superior. I love the socca idea. Polenta would also rock.

  11. I make tortilla pizzas on a regular basis (although I prefer French Meadow Bakery Sprouted Tortillas) but I also crisp them in the oven first so they more like a thin crust. It is a staple in my house!
    Going to try the eggplant spread next time – sounds amazing!

  12. I love Ezekiel products as well. I just bought a package of the wraps this week to make homemade pizzas. This one looks divine.

    Hope you are well Gena.