I love pizza… don’t we all? There’s a popular saying about those delicious pies, “Pizza is like sex, even when it’s bad- it’s still pretty good.” But bad can manifest is many different ways: soggy crust, sloppy sauce, greasy meat or (and here’s where I suffer) flour-induced gut rot.
While pizza certainly satisfies the demands of my greedy taste buds, floury pizza crusts wrecks havoc on my intestines. Eating pizza literally hurts. Until recently I figured the only way to deal with this problem was to suffer through, the means justifying the end. Gluten free crusts held no appeal owing to their general long list of other ingredients I didn’t want to eat, or their bland and unappealing taste. But then I discovered cauliflower and everything changed.
Always a fan of vegetables, especially veg that can pass the deliciousness challenge, I decided that it was time to take part in this Pinterest phenomenon and do pizza the cauliflower way.
Here’s what you’ll need for the crust:
1 large head of cauliflower
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 egg, stirred
1/4 c. flour (buckwheat, oat or wheat)
1/4 c. parmesan cheese
1/4 c. mozzarella cheese
salt to taste
Preheat oven to 450F and place your pizza stone, pan or whatever you’re gonna bake your pie on in the oven to get hot.
Wash and thoroughly dry your cauliflower and then cut off all the florets and pop them into your food processor. Whiz them for about a minute, stirring every now and then, until they resemble busted up styrofoam. Now place the cauliflower into a microwavable dish, top with a lid and cook for two- four minutes. Pour cauliflower into a cheese cloth or other cotton cloth (an old, clean pillowcase words great) and with rubber gloves on (because the cauliflower is HOT) squeeze the juice out of the veg. You’ll be surprised by how much come out. Pour dry cauliflower into a large bowl and add 1/4 c. flour (I like buckwheat but oat works well too. If your tummy isn’t bothered by wheat you can use regular flour). Stir in the two cheeses and the herbs and then add the egg. Taste the dough and decide whether you’d like to add a sprinkle of salt to the mix. Stir everything up and then plop your dough onto a large piece of parchment paper. With your fingers, squish the dough into a pizza shape, about 1/4 inch thick. Carefully remove the hot pizza stone from the oven and slide the pizza parchment onto it. Pop it back in and bake for about ten minutes- until the cheese in the crust looks golden brown. While it’s baking, prepare your sauce and toppings.
Remove the crust. Smear with tomato sauce and sprinkle your preferred toppings onto the pie. Proceed to bake another 10-15 minutes (until cheese begins to brown).
This exceptional crust is absolutely delicious. My kids gobbled it up and even my meat-loving husband said, “it’s not bad.” A rare compliment for a vegetable.