This meal was pure folly. The first sunny, truly hot day of the season; Michael and I meet in the city for a rooftop cocktail before heading home for dinner. And what have I picked for dinner? Pizza. From scratch. In the oven. With these marinated things you're meant to bake first. On a school night. Like I said, pure folly. But worth it!
We'd received a couple of little beetroots in our vege box, y'see, and I had my heart set on turning them into beetroot pepperoni - seen on In The Mood For Noodles and sourced from Diet, Dessert and Dogs. It starts off very much like the bacon marinade recipes we're familiar with but brings more ground spices into the mix (and I'd encourage you to up the paprika and add some cayenne if you like it spicy). Thankfully the thin-as-you-can beetroot slices don't need any pre-marinating - it all just goes straight in the oven, to cook down to sticky deliciousness.
With these little gems on our pizza, we kept the rest pretty simple - just tomato paste, sliced mushrooms (another fading vege box item) and a little cheese. It was a supreme pizza.
It would a smarter pizza, of course, if I'd pre-baked the beetroot. This stuff would surely double or triple and store well in the fridge for days. I can imagine adding it to all manner of things - sandwiches, pasta, salads, burgers, bakes, tarts, muffins, ...
Thankfully we were able to get our teeth into another pizza while the beetroot was baking. This one was topped with a vegan pesto kindly given to me by a friend, pre-baked pumpkin slices (a vege box advance-planning win!), pine nuts and rocket.
(adapted slightly from In The Mood For Noodles,
where it's credited to Diet, Dessert and Dogs)
3-4 very small beetroots
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons tamari
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon beef-style stock powder
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
1/8 teaspoon ground sage leaves
1/4 teaspoon paprika
I'd recommend: more paprika and cayenne for extra spice
Preheat an oven to 170°C.
Peel the beetroots and slice them as thinly as you can. In a baking tray or casserole dish, whisk together the remaining ingredients. Add the beetroot slices, coating them thoroughly in the marinade then spreading them out as best you can.
Bake the beetroot slices, first for 20 minutes and then in 10 minute intervals. Flip the slices over and keep basting them in the marinade each time you retrieve them from the oven. When they've absorbed most of the marinade and are starting to dry out and curl up around the edges (this took mine a bit over an hour) they're done!