I really love these thoughtful pizzas. The cauliflower crust makes eating them feels so light. The sauce is raw, so you can feel the freshness of the tomatoes. The flavors are sweet and tangy with a mediterranean flare from the fresh oregano. This is a wonderful pizza to make for anyone who doesn’t want to eat refined industrial flour and they are gluten free.
This crust is a base for any toppings you’d like. Create any combination you can imagine. You can also make everything in advance: make the crust and the sauce in advance. You can even prepare the toppings beforehand. Then, you only need ten minutes to put it all together and bake it to melt the cheese. This can be a healthy everyday pizza or a mindful way to entertain.
The Cauliflower Pizza Crust
1 small cauliflower, grated
1 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup amaranth flour
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 egg, beaten
salt and pepper
The Tomato Sauce
4 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
2 shallots, finely sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 twig fresh oregano, leaves finely cut
1 bunch fresh basil
glaze of balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
Use these topping or any toppings you like.
1 ball mozzarella cheese, torn or cut into pieces
fresh sliced mushrooms (optional)
red chili pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with pan lining paper and lightly grease it with olive oil. (When making this crust, I tried several different ways to cook it without it sticking to the pan: I tried it on a rack over a pizza stone, on a silicone mat, and on a tray with waxing paper. I managed to make them work, but I had to work carefully, so the crust was not as easy as I had hoped. Then I decided to try the Reynolds non-stick pan lining paper, the same one I used to make my apple terrine. It worked fabulously. It was so easy to remove it looked like a commercial, but it was real life.)
To make the tomato sauce, mix all ingredients. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle with the balsamic vinegar glaze and with a good amount of olive oil. Set aside.
To make the crust, cut the head of cauliflower into florets and wash it in hot water. Grate the heads in food processor. (You can use a box grater here instead, but without cutting the cauliflower into florets.) Once the cauliflower is grated, form it into a ball. Put it in cheesecloth and squeeze out all the excess liquid. Combine the cauliflower and the remaining ingredients for the crust in a large bowl. Mix with your hands to form a sticky dough.
At this point, you can make four small pizzas, three medium pizzas, two large pizzas, or several mini pizzas. Pick your pizza size, and form a ball of dough. Spread the ball of dough out on your prepared pan, flattening it into a round pizza shape that is thin, but not paper thin. Bake for fifteen minutes and then flip it over and bake on the other side for five more minutes. The crust is ready when it is golden and crunchy. I made multiple pizzas and made all my crusts first, setting them aside and topping them all together at the end.
The side that baked for fifteen minutes will be crunchier. Put this side face up (so the other side will be the side that cooks a little bit more more when the cheese melts). Top with the sauce, mushrooms, and cheese. Pop into the oven and bake again for another five to eight minutes or until the cheese melts.
Garnish with fresh basil or a sprinkle of crushed red chili flakes. I love topping mine with fresh arugula or simply drizzling it with my favorite pesto. When I served my pizzas, I had a surprise that I liked: I put the pizza on an Acacia wood wedge to slice it and it took on an aromatic smoky flavor that transported me to another world.