Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tofurky Pizza Review

Prio to baking. That's obvious, right?
You've been waiting for it a long time. Am I right? It seems like ages since the lovely folks at Tofurky responded to my open letter to them by sending me three free pizza coupons, one for each flavor from their new line of frozen pizzas. As I stated at the time, I've always felt vegans have for a long time been excluded that particular market, the only available options being the rare cheese-less veggie pizza that mysteriously costs more than its dairy counter-parts. I guess that's another kind of vegan tax. Companies think we'll be so grateful to have a vegan option that we won't shrink from paying more for fewer ingredients. In any case, this is why I was so excited when I discovered the Tofurky pizzas in the freezer case at Santa Rosa Community Market. You can check out Tofurky's webpage about these pizzas, along with complete nutritional information and ingredients here

These pizzas are a little on the small side, but just the right amount of food for two or three people, depending on how hungry/starved-for-frozen-pizzas the eaters are. C and I are notorious piggies (we routinely defeat--by which I mean out-eat--our omni friends in this regard), so we could each eat half a pizza. Easy. And we did.

My main reaction is that these pizzas comprise a very faithful vegan rendition of the thin-crusted frozen pizzas I ate as a kid. Tofurky isn't trying to do something like those super fussy, artisan, or deep-dish pizzas you can get now. This is classic stuff. While I can imagine the future could hold many more variations (Wild Mushroom, anyone? Hawaiian? "Meat" Lovers?), I like that they're kicking off the line by offering three kinds: Cheese, Pepperoni, and Sausage. It's sort of elegant in its simplicity. If memory serves, they run about 8 bucks a piece.

Delicious, hot, gooey pizza.
The crust is just right. It manages to be both slightly crispy at the edges while still bready, if that makes any sense. I'm not one of those people who would ever throw a pizza directly on the oven racks, though, so I'm clearly not devoted to the idea that pizza crust should be totally crispy. I prefer a mixture of textures. What I really liked about all three, though, was the herby, garlicky sauce. It has a definite, savory zing to it, which (along with the vegan thing) is the only major difference between this pizza and the traditional, omni kind. Aside from those basic elements, C and I both agreed that the pepperoni pizza was the best, followed by the cheese, with sausage bringing up the rear. As a person who has attempted to make the kind of pepperoni that graces the generous layer of Daiya cheese, I admired both the pronounced smokiness of the recipe and the texture of the large, toothsome chunks. The great thing about the cheese was the simple, herb-infused smell and taste of the sauce with the Daiya. In fact, I was a little perplexed that the list of ingredients for the cheese pizza doesn't include some heady melange of marjoram, oregano, and basil. I could swear I tasted all three. Sausage is our third favorite because we weren't wild about the combination of little chunks of veggies with the faux-meat. The combination of toppings overwhelmed and didn't let the sausage, which should have been the star of the show, shine.  

In conclusion, I'll definitely get these again. True, I like to make my own pizza, but I don't always want to. We like the vegan pizza available from the little vegetarian cafe close to where we live, but those cost $30 a piece. The Tofurky pizzas are both tasty and affordable. I'm just glad I live somewhere where I can buy them easily and don't have to fly to Portland for the privilege!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i am eating the cheese right now, tastes like it was sprinkled with nutritional yeast.