Jon’s birthday was Saturday and, as is our custom, we always begin celebrating a few days leading up to the event — mostly with the honoree’s favorite foods being enjoyed.
This year, Jon’s birthday blow-out coincided with a visit from some of our best friends who also enjoy the same food penchants we do, including doubling up on the garlic, olives, or hot chiles in most any recipe!
One of Jon’s birthday meal requests was pizza (as it is most every year!) I decided to make the Tuscan White Bean Pizza from Vegan on the Cheap (see May 13 post: http://veganplanet.blogspot.com/2010/05/tuscan-white-bean-pizza.html).
Don’t get me wrong, that pizza is utterly fantastic in its own right, but I have to tell you that I’ve made a good thing even better with a few embellishments. Here’s what I did:
1. I doubled the amount of garlic in the white bean topping.
2. Not only did I mix lots of fresh basil into the topping, I also liberally spread basil on top of the topping as well.
3. I used thinly sliced super-sweet grape tomatoes on top along with halved and pitted kalamata olives.
4. For a big finish: I dabbed small spoonfuls of green olive and tomato tapenade on top of the pizza.
Everyone eating this amazing pizza was speechless — mostly because their mouths were stuffed with pizza! But between bites, we all agreed it was outstanding. If you haven’t tried it yet, I hope you will — and let me know if you add any “extras” — I think next time I’ll add a few shakes of hot red pepper flakes or some slices of my homemade vegan pepperoni!