Low carb, gluten free cauliflower pizza (yes, really!)

image[4]Bear with me, as I know pizza and low-carb is a bit of an oxymoron, but not anymore!  I love pizza (er, who doesn’t right!) but the heavy wheat and dairy combo doesn’t fare well with me, so it’s very very rarely on my list of things to eat.  Well that was until I discovered cauliflower pizza.

Anyone who has dabbled in low carb/paleo might have come across this before, and it’s been on my to do list for ages now, so last Sunday, armed with all my ingredients, I set about on my low carb pizza journey, and it was well worth it!

Credit where credit is due – I totally stole this recipe from http://www.domesticate-me.com/cauliflower-pizza-crust-with-roasted-vegetables-and-goat-cheese/ who claims this to be the ‘best cauliflower pizza ever’, and she’s right.  With a claim like that how could I resist? I only made a few minor amendments..

Disclaimer:

  1. If you don’t like cauliflower please don’t discount this recipe – bizarrely it doesn’t actually taste of cauliflower
  2. The base holds like proper pizza (gutted I didn’t take a picture of this, but you’ll have to take my word on this)
  3. It takes longer than expected. It’s not a difficult recipe, but the grating of the cauliflower and the draining and rolling takes a bit of time – persevere – I promise it will be worth it.  I’ll add a few time saving tips along the way.

Makes one large (ish) pizza.  Serves 2

Ingredients:

For the cauliflower base:

  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, stems removed and cut into florets (*Time saving tip* buy ready cut up florets)
  • 1 tablespoon dried herbs (I used an Italian herb seasoning which had basil, oregano and something else!)
  • Pinch or two of salt
  • 1 tablespoon dried chilli/red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1-2 eggs (the recipe I used called for 1 egg, but my dough mixture was a bit dry and crumbly, so I used an extra one to help hold it all together)
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan
  • 1/4 cup grated mozzarella (about half a ‘ball’ of mozzarella)
  • 1/4 cup of ground almonds
  • Parchment paper

For the topping:

Feel free to amend this according to what you fancy.  It was Sunday, and a bit of a treat day, so I wasn’t as healthy with my toppings as I might have been otherwise (next time I’ll add more greens, but pepperoni called this time round!)

  • 1/4 large red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
  • Pepperoni slices
  • 2 small fresh tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pizza sauce (much better to make your own, but I was having a lazy day and used a store bought one)
  • Pinch of dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • Handful of fresh basil
  • Remaining mozzarella, shredded
  • Grated cheddar (optional)
  • Olive oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 220 degrees C

1. Add the sliced peppers and onions to a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil and a little salt.  Bake for 10 minutes, then remove and set aside

2. Blitz the cauliflower florets in a food processor until it resembles fine sand.  You may need to do this in batches.  I did this in my blender and it does take a bit longer, as you have to scrape down the cauliflower from the sides and continue with the next batch

3. Put the cauliflower sand in a microwaveable bowl, cover and microwave for 3-4 minutes. Remove and let cool (very important or you will burn your hands in the next step!

4. Spoon 1/3 of the cauliflower into a clean tea towel, and wring to remove all the water. Really squeeze as it you need the cauliflower as dry as possible.  *Time saving tip* -get a friend/partner/room-mate to help! Repeat with the rest of the cauliflower

5. Place the cauliflower in a large mixing bowel and add the egg(s), cheese, ground almonds,herbs, seasoning and spices, and mix thoroughly (hands are your best tools here!)

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6. Using your hands form a ball of dough (add the second egg if you find this too crumbly)

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7. Place the dough in between two pieces of parchment paper and using a rolling pin roll into a round pizza shape (or as round as possible), about 1/6 inch in height

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8.  Remove the top sheet and place the cauliflower on a heated tray in oven for 8-10 minutes (you want it golden brown)

9. Carefully remove the pizza crust from the oven and spread the pizza sauce over and add the toppings and seasonings of your choice

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10. Bake for another 5-10 minutes (watch it doesn’t burn)

11. Remove from oven and let it cool for 2 minutes (important if you want to be able to hold your slices like proper pizza)

12. Slice and enjoy!

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I loved this and I sincerely hope you do too.  Let me know how you get on!

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