Cauliflower crust pizza

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Oh cauliflower pizza crust, I have been skeptical of you for so long. So, so long. The first time I attempted a cauliflower crust was back in the day, long before I knew what a blog was, after getting a recipe from someone in my local gym. I didn’t love cauliflower at the time but I didn’t loathe it either. Plus, it came loaded with lots of cheese, so it had to be a win. Right?

Not only is the crust simple, it is FAST. That’s the key for me. Now, let me say that I don’t think I will ever replace my favorite pizza crust. I make a mean whole-wheat dough and love it all up. But this is an awesome recipe for when you want pizza and you are short on time, or when you want pizza but are willing to draw outside the lines a bit, or when you want pizza but need to stay away from gluten/ low carb. Or maybe you’re trying to sneak in some extra veg. Story of my life.

This gets even better with an array of toppings. I like to try new toppings and base sauces for my pizzas, this time I have added grilled eggplants. 😉  So excited. Let’s get started!

Ingredients:

1 small to medium sized head of cauliflower – should yield 2 to 3 cups once processed
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
1/4 cup mozzarella cheese
1 egg

Method:

Place a pizza stone in the oven, or baking sheet if you don’t have a pizza stone. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. On a cutting board, place a large piece of parchment paper and spray it with nonstick cooking oil.

Wash and thoroughly dry a small head of cauliflower. Don’t get one the size of your head unless you are planning on making 2 pizzas. Cut off the florets, you don’t need much stem. Just stick with the florets. Pulse in your food processor for about 30 seconds, until you get powdery snow like cauliflower. You should end up with 2 to 3 cups cauliflower “snow” – In this case I ended up with 2 1/3 cups. Place the cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and cover. Microwave for 4 minutes. Dump cooked cauliflower onto a clean tea towel and allow to cool for a bit before attempting the next step.

Once cauliflower is cool enough to handle, wrap it up in the dish towel and wring the heck out of it. You want to squeeze out as much water as possible. This will ensure you get a chewy pizza like crust instead of a crumbly mess.

Dumped cauliflower into a bowl. Now add parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, kosher salt, dried basil , dried oregano, garlic powder and red pepper flakes if you want. I skipped the almond flour at this time since I have plenty of cauliflower.  Now add your egg (and hopefully you made sure you had one before you started) and mix away. Hands tend to work best.

Once mixed together, use your hands to form the dough into a crust on your oiled parchment paper. Pat it down thoroughly, you want it nice and tightly formed together. Don’t make it too thick or thin either. Now, using a cutting board slide the parchment paper onto your hot pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 8 – 11 minutes. Until it looks like this:
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Delicious, right? Just wait till you add the toppings and finish it off! Now add pizza sauce /presto/alfredo.., cheese, and toppings you want. I’m not gonna give you measurements for this. You know how you like your pizza – so go for it! Slide parchment with topped pizza back in the hot oven and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes until the cheese is melted, bubbly, and slightly golden.
Oh yes.Test your patience and allow it to cool for a minute or two. Probably closer to two. Then using a pizza cutter and a spatula serve up your delicious grain-free cauliflower crust pizza!
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Veggie Avocado Puff Pizza

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Everyone loves pizza! It doesnt matter if you have tomatoes and mozzarella or cover it in 10 different kinds of vegetables/tofu. No matter what combination of toppings you like, that pizza is going to be devoured. I am so use to eating outside pizza but since I started making pizza dough at home, I dont miss outside pizza anymore. Plus homemade dough is better if you are watching your diet. I love baking with puff pastry because it is so versatile. The puffed pastry does most of the work. I use to make puff pastry dough at home but since now its so easy to go grab it from the store, I have given up making it at home. Puff pastry is amazing because you can make anything you like with it, sweet or savory. You can make turnovers, tarts, pizza, puffs, cheese straws, etc. All these things can be made quickly in very short time. When I make puff pizzas, I get very creative. At times I use red sauce, pesto sauce, white sauce, truffle oil, etc. I get creative with toppings too. You can basically make it anyway you like. Use whatever your heart desires. So far my fav is this one, so I thought to share this combination with you 😉 Grab some plates! Pour some wine! Invite your friends and enjoy this delicious pizzas 😉

Ingredients:

1 whole sheet frozen puff pastry

olive oil for brushing

1/2 cup fresh mozzarella grated

olives finely sliced

onions finely sliced

tomatoes finely sliced

avocado finely sliced

2 gloves garlic minced

1 jalapeno pepper finely sliced

salt and pepper to taste

2 tsp truffle oil to drizzle on top

Method:

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Thaw the puffed pastry on the counter for 30 minutes. When thawed, carefully open the sheet, then slice it in half down the middle. Place both halves on a baking sheet lined with parchment or aluminum foil. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, then start prepping the pizza toppings.

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Brush a thin layer of olive oil on the puff pastry. In the middle layer all your toppings(olives, onions, tomatoes, jalapenos, avocados). Add cheese on the top. Add salt and pepper according to your taste. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes. Pastry could go crazy and puff up in the unwanted areas but dont worry when you take it out it will all settle in the right place.

Remove from the oven and drizzle truffle oil and allow the pizzas to settle for 5 minutes before serving.

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P.S. I did not add any sauce this time because i love the taste of truffle oil. You can add red sauce, white sauce, pesto sauce, etc. Basically you can get creative with this pizza. Just remember to go light with the sauce and cheese, The star of the pizza really is the puffed pastry it self!

Perfect Pizza Dough

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I am a huge fan of pizza. In fact, if I had to pick a favorite food it would be pizza. If  I had to pick one food to eat everyday for the rest of my life- that would be pizza. However, up until now, I preferred carry out to homemade pizza. My homemade pizza is good but it just couldn’t beat my favorite commercial pizza place. But now I can say all changed so quickly when I made this pizza this weekend. It is quite simple recipe! If you dont have a pizza stone, invest in one! Pizza stone is what makes or breaks the pizza!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup warm water

1 envelope (2 ¼ tsp.) instant yeast

1 ¼ tsp cups of water, at room temperature

2 tbsp. EEVO

4 cups of bread flour, plus more for dusting

1 ¼ tsp tsp salt

olive oil for greasing the bowl

Method:

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Measure the warm water into a 2-cup liquid measuring cup.  Sprinkle in the yeast and let stand until the yeast dissolves and swells, about 5 minutes.  Add the room temperature water and oil and stir to combine.  Place the flour and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Briefly combine the dry ingredients at low speed.  Slowly add the liquid ingredients and continue to mix at low speed until a cohesive mass forms. Stop the mixer and with dough hook, knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. You know the dough is done when you press your finger on it, it bounces right back. Form the dough into a ball, put it in a deep oiled bowl, and cover with plastic wrap.  Let rise until doubled in size, about 1 ½ to 2 hours.  Press the dough to deflate it.

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To bake, place a pizza stone in the lower third of the oven.  Heat the oven to 500° for at least 30 minutes.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface.  Divide the dough into two equal pieces.  Form both pieces of dough into smooth, round balls and cover with a damp cloth.  Let the dough relax for at least 10 minutes but no more than 30 minutes.Working with one piece of dough and keeping the other covered, shape the dough and transfer to a pizza peel or round of parchment dusted with semolina or cornmeal.  Toppings as desired.  Slide the dough onto the pizza stone.  Bake until the crust edges brown and cheese is golden brown in spots, about 8 to 12 minutes.  Repeat with remaining ball of dough or freeze for later use.

P.S. Try subbing a bit of whole what or spelt flour for the white sometime. The healthy whole grains are welcome addition, and I also love the extra flavor they give the pizza