Pan Fried Pizza with Cashew Nut ‘Mozzarella Cheese’


One of the first things I realised when I started exploring plant-based cooking more seriously was that there was this whole world creaminess I knew very little about before. One particular revelation was cashew nuts. I mean, just soak them in hot water overnight and pulp them and you’ve got a thick cream that’s just as versatile as dairy – no weird additives or flavourants in sight. The next step, of course, was taking the idea of plant-based pizza night for a spin. Would it strike the same chord? Could it ever measure up to the stringy cheese classic? It’s definitely different – but in the best possible way – with new flavours and textures that add a new layer of yummy. The result was a resounding wow!


TIME: cashew nut ‘mozzarella cheese’: overnight + 1 hour, pizza base: 1 ½ hours, tomato sauce: 1 hour, vegetables toppings: 30 minutes |  MAKES: 4 pizzas


for the cashew nut ‘mozzarella cheese’

125 ml raw cashew nuts

250 ml soy milk

5 ml miso paste

15 ml natural yeast flakes (available at health stores)

60 ml corn starch

salt and freshly ground black pepper

15 ml fresh lemon juice


for the pan-fried pizza base

250 g (445 ml) cake flour

1 ml salt

2 ml sugar

1 x 10 g packet instant yeast

125 – 175 ml warm water

100 ml olive oil

for the tomato sauce

30 ml olive oil

½ onion, finely chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

5 large Rosa tomatoes, cubed

salt and freshly ground black pepper


for the cashew nut ‘mozzarella cheese’

Place the cashew nuts in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let it soak overnight. Drain and place the soaked nuts in a blender with the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth. Pour the mixture into a saucepan and place on medium. Keep stirring until the mixture has thickened. Leave to cool and place on a large piece of cling film and roll into a cylinder shape. Place in the freezer until cold and hard, but not frozen.

for the pan-fried pizza base

Place the flour, salt, sugar, and yeast in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook. While mixing, gradually add the water until a soft dough forms. Let it knead for 10 minutes. Take dough out of bowl and place in a clean bowl that is rubbed with a little olive oil. Cover and place in a warm place until double in size. Knock the dough down on a floured surface and divide into four equal pieces. Roll the dough into round circles. Heat the olive oil on a medium heat in a large saucepan and place one base in the pan. Fry on one side until golden and carefully turn the base around. Fry until golden – this takes about 2 minutes per side. Place on kitchen towel and repeat with the rest of the bases.

for the tomato sauce

Heat the olive oil in a saucepan and add the onion. Fry until soft and translucent. Add the garlic and tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and let it simmer for about 45 minutes.


to assemble your pizza

Heat the oven to 200 °C. Place the pizza bases on a baking tray and top with the tomato sauce. Slice the cashew nut cheese into sliced rounds and arrange on top. Place in the oven for about 10 minutes. Serve your pizza with fried aubergine slices, fried mushrooms, fresh asparagus, marinated artichokes, fresh basil and capers, or anything that tickles your fancy.

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