Personal Lavash Flatbread Pizza

"I want you to market yourself to the class. Tell them your strengths and weaknesses, your work experience, and your preferences," instructed my Bistro 61 professor. 

Bistro 61 is the capstone course of my Food Service Management degree. It's basically a combination of every class my peers and I have fought through since we started culinary school. Sure, we can all make a menu under a budget, but can we manage a BOH (back of the house) and FOH (front of the house) crew? Umm...sure?

My soft spoken self will need to learn how to prance through the kitchen in heels on my management day (I'm designated sous chef on April 13th). By this, I mean that I will need to extend my backbone by a foot in order to touch my confidence to the roof. I've strapped on my stilettos, but standing tall in the soul of my shoes is an awfully difficult task.

"My name is Jessica. I'm in baking and pastry. I'm a barista. I can make latte art. I have no idea how to cook meat, but I can do anything with vegetables. I do not have front of the house experience, but I want to learn," I calmly stated. 

A false claim: "I can make latte art."

Starbucks doesn't exactly hand out badges of creativity. In my store, it's a crime to place a heart on a customer's vanilla latte order. I play around with cappuccinos when work is slow (hardly ever). 1/10 free-poured cappuccinos results in a beautiful leaf pattern. The remaining 9 look like blobs and swirls of what I like to call "abstract" art by a RISD (Rhode Island School of Design) student. It could be a sloth...or a bird with a broken wing. Oh I know! It's that character from Where the Wild Things Are! 

Today is my final day to get it right before I make my appearance on the beverage station for Menu 1's coffee service tomorrow. (Wish me luck, for I also get to battle the day with a mean cold). 

As far as the rest of my statement goes, I really don't know how to cook a piece of meat. As a culinary student, it's a little pathetic, but I'm a little more grateful than ashamed over it. Vegetables are my friends. I taught myself to sauté and roast them like a true home-cook. 

My favorite part about veg. cooking is this: simplicity. Cooking doesn't have to be complicated. You don't have to know the science of molecular gastronomy to make a pizza, you just dress some dough with your favorite toppings and let the oven do the work. 

While searching for pita bread in Whole Foods, I found lavash, an unleavened middle-eastern flatbread. When baked, lavash turns crisp like a cracker. I tossed my idea for pita pizza and picked up the lavash instead. To put this recipe into basic terms: it's a pizza on a cracker...and polly is pleased. 




Personal Flatbread Pizza


Ingredients:
  • 1 square lavash 
  • 2 carrots
  • 1/2 yellow or red onion
  • 1 apple
  • 2 stems kale
  • 1/4 cup mushrooms
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • black pepper to taste
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 cup cabbage
  • 3/4 cup tomato sauce 
  • parmesan cheese (click here for my favorite vegan recipe)

Method:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lay the lavash down flat on a sheet pan. 
  2. Chop the carrots, onion, apple, kale, and mushrooms and sauté together with spices in coconut oil until veggies are fully cooked. Chop the cabbage as well, but leave out of the sauté. 
  3. Spread tomato sauce evenly over the lavash and top with sautéed vegetables. Sprinkle raw cabbage over the top. 
  4. Bake for 7-9 minutes until the lavash is crispy. Remove from oven and sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top of the pizza. Use a sharp knife or a pizza cutter to slice into squares or fold the crust over itself and enjoy like a pizza-taco!

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Maira Gall