I don’t know about you, but every time I see a picture of one of the cauliflower crust pizzas while surfing the web, my mouth waters. I figured it was time to take the plunge and see what the bruhaha was all about.
I get it now, really I do.
Before you get all excited, let me say this first. When I started changing my diet years ago I found that the substitutes for dishes I had a long time love affair with to be generally disappointing.
Raw pasta made out of spiralized zucchini with tomato sauce on top?
Puh-lease….not even close. Hated it.
And “nut cheese?” Is that some sort of joke?
None of this stuff made me feel good about what I was removing from my diet.
My opinions have since changed because my palate has changed. Be patient. That’s all I ask.
If this recipe sounds a bit weird to you, I totally get it. But don’t throw the baby out with the bath water yet!
Fast forward a few years and here’s what has worked for me. RE-framing it. I don’t think of spiralized zucchini as pasta anymore, it’s just a completely new dish. Expecting a cauliflower crust to live up to the expectations of a New York style pizza is just ridiculous.
Work it around in your brain so that it works for you. Capice?
So let me say this right up front… You can’t make cauliflower into wheat flour no matter how hard you try.
If you are looking for an awesome new and inspiring dish for you and/or your family. This is it. It is not nor will it ever be NY style pizza pie.
It will, however be completely guilt-free and freakin’ DELISH.
Keep in mind, this is a VERY flexible recipe. You can add or subtract whatever you want from a seasoning and toppings perspective. Make this recipe YOURS.
1 medium head of cauliflower (approximately 3 cups after it’s been processed but don’t fret if it’s a little more or a little less)
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper (TIP: I grind my red pepper into a dust for more even distribution when flavoring)
1/8 teaspoon fine ground black pepper
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon garlic granules (or powder)
1/4 teaspoon onion granules (or powder)
1. Chop up a medium head of cauliflower and drop it in your food processor.
2. Pulse until it’s well ground.
3. Turn it out onto a cotton towel.
4. Squeeze the liquid out of the cauliflower turning and twisting the ball until no more liquid comes out.
5. Turn it out into a bowl then break it up into a flour looking consistency.
6. Add seasonings and mix well.
7. Make a hole in the middle and break an egg into it. Blend thoroughly using your hands.
8. Roll it into a ball once it is fully blended.
At this point I would turn the oven onto 450 and put your cookie sheet in the oven.
9. Pull a length of parchment paper out to fit a cookie sheet and spread it with a thin coat of olive oil.
10. Drop the ball of “dough” onto the center of the parchment paper and flatten out and shape with your hands. After mine was flat I finished it nicely with an offset knife, one of my prized kitchen possessions.
11. You can shape the pizza in any way you’d like. Generally speaking, this much cauliflower will render you a 10-12 inch round pizza. (Roughly) I prefer mine thin but not so thin it won’t hold together.
12. Drop the parchment paper with the “dough” onto the hot cookie sheet in the 450 degree oven and let cook for 18 minutes or so. Ovens vary. Start checking yours around the 12 minute mark and rotate if necessary. When it is nice and brown around the edges you can pull it out, cover it with a fresh piece of DRY parchment paper, flip it over and peel the original parchment paper off. The bottom now becomes the top.
Add cooked items to the top of the pizza for best results.
Typically, when the crust is cooking I saute’ a bunch of veggies I intend to throw on top as soon as the crust comes out of the oven.
Be creative. I don’t always use tomato sauce, sometimes I use pesto. And sometimes I don’t use cheese, I use avocado slices.
Once it’s completely covered with your cooked goodies, reduce the oven temperature to 375 and put it back in the oven for another 10 minutes OR until it looks delicious enough to eat.