lievita – pizza al taglio

pizza

Pizza by the slice is a common occurrence in the USA and Italy, but I haven’t seen it in more than a couple of places in Melbourne.

Lievita in Northcote offers pizza by the slice but takes it a step further than the USA by allowing you to choose how big or small you’d like the piece to be.  They use scissors to cut off the size you want and you pay by weight. It costs $35 per kilo, which translates to a very reasonable $10 for a piece roughly the size of a small pizza.

The joy is that you get to try small pieces, rather than just one whole pizza. For a single food committment phobe like me it is the equivalent of pizza degustation. There is no problem choosing which pizza to buy, you can have it all.  It also has the advantage you can buy as much as you need, rather than a set size.

I chose the Marinara – Roman style with tomato, garlic, chilli and parsley and also a slice with cooked onions, olives and oregano on a tomato base. Both were excellent.

On a subsequent visit I sampled the zucchini pizza which is just topped with grated zucchini and garlic. It was also delicious. Unfortunately I didn’t photograph it.

My son alerted me to the existence of Lievita and he tells me that he asked them what was the smallest slice they have cut, and they told him it was 2cm wide. So there is plenty of scope for trying several. :)

You can have it heated up there, you can sit down at a few tables, but I think it is perfect for on the run, or to take home.

There are five vegan pizzas on the menu. They don’t have all the pizzas made at any given time, but when I went they had five made, two of which were vegan. It is probably a good idea to check if the pizzas they have made at any given time are the vegan ones.

I took mine cold and heated it up in the oven myself.  It is crispy and delicious, and while it is not quite as good as a freshly cooked pizza, it is still very, very good.

This is probably going to become a regular stop on my way home on a Friday night.

Lievita
298 High St,
Northcote, 3070
9489 9498
www.lievita.com.au

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buffalo cauliflower bites with ranch dressing

buffalo cauliflower bites with ranch dressing

I went to a birthday party recently and the vegan finger food was just wonderful.  Most of it was made by a friend of the hosts and a couple of dishes in particular were standouts.  These cauliflower bites were probably my favourite and I came home on a mission to recreate them.

There are a large number of recipes for buffalo cauliflower around on the internet. I settled on this one with some variations, substituting fresh garlic instead of powdered and using some smoked paprika. I also used lime juice instead of the vinegar in the ranch dressing.

I spiced them up by using Sriracha instead of Frank’s Hot Sauce in the marinade. Sriracha is five times as hot as Frank’s, 2200 vs 450 Scoville units (the measure of chilli heat). I like chilli so it was fine for me.

They are delicious and completely moreish.

 

buffalo cauliflower bites with ranch dressing
 
prep time
cook time
total time
 
author:
recipe type: snack, finger food
cuisine: vegan
ingredients
  • 800 grams of cauliflower cut into bite sized pieces
For the batter
  • ⅓ cup soy milk
  • ⅓ cup water
  • ½ cup plain flour
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp smoked paprika
  • a large pinch of salt
For the Marinade
  • 2 tbsp vegan margarine or butter
  • 3 tbs sriracha hot sauce
For the Ranch dressing
  • ½ cup vegan mayo
  • ½ clove garlic crushed to a paste
  • 1 tbs soy milk
  • juice of half a lime or lemon
  • 1 tbs finely chopped parsley
  • 1 tbs finely chopped dill
  • salt to taste
instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 220 deg C
  2. Mix the batter ingredients together in a large bowl
  3. Fold in the cauliflower pieces so they are completely coated in the batter
  4. Lift the cauliflower pieces out of the bowl with a fork to drain any excess batter and place on a single layer on a tray lined with baking paper.
  5. Cook for 25 minutes
  6. Meanwhile mix the marinade ingredients together and melt the butter in a microwave or saucepan
  7. Add the cauliflower pieces to the marinade mix and fold to coat completely
  8. Return to the oven in a single layer on baking paper and cook for a further 25 minutes
  9. Make the ranch dressing by mixing all the ingredients together.
  10. Serve the bites with ranch dressing as a dipping sauce.

 

 

gardein arrives in australia

gardein

Social media has gone nuts with the arrival of nine varieties of Gardein mock meats in Australia.

I bought seven of those varieties to taste. Fishless fillets, chicken scallopini, 7 grain crispy chicken tenders, Szechuan beef strips, mandarin orange crispy chicken, chicken sliders and teriyaki chicken strips. All the Gardein products are vegan. A couple are gluten free as well.

I know that lots of vegans and vegetarians don’t like even the idea of faux meats, particularly people who have never eaten meat. But for those of us who grew up with it, are vegans for ethical reasons and miss the texture and flavour, products like Gardein are a treat. They are also great for people making a transition to being vegan or meat eaters who think they can’t give up meat.

So far, I’ve tried the crispy tenders that make a great chicken parma sandwich, and also the fishless fillets that bear an uncanny resemblance to fish in both taste and texture. Last night I tried the sliders. The burgers in those are great but the buns are too soft and sweet for my liking so I took the burgers out and ate them on sourdough bread. Call me a yuppie, but I like my junk food stylish.

I’ve yet to try the others but I have to say, on the evidence so far, this is very convincing mock meat, both in texture and taste.

I’ve already bought some more of the fishless fillets. They are great for an easy fish and chip night with some tartare sauce. Hand me a pickled onion.

Gardein is available quite widely, I’ve bought them from Prahran Convenience and Smith & Deli. They are also available at Manna Fresh in Essendon and a number of IGA supermarkets. It is nice to see vegan food going mainstream.

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