I adore pizza. In a nanosecond, I can tick off my favorite pizza places in New Jersey, New York, and of course, North Carolina: Vic’s Bar and Restaurant in Bradley Beach, Gino’s of Long Beach, and Trophy Brewing and Pizza in Raleigh. When ordering pies, I waffle between being a traditionalist and an adventurer. Sometimes my cravings are satisfied by a trusty tomato sauce and mozzarella pie, while other times I hanker for a pie heaped with exotic add-ons. Here’s a wide-grinned picture of me as I’m about to dig in at Trophy Brewing and Pizza.
Even with all that pizza love in my heart–and all the time I spend tinkering in the kitchen–my pizzas are rarely homemade. And never completely from scratch.
Cauliflower crust pizza recipes have been popping up all over the Internet. The first few recipes piqued my curiosity. However, the whole of it seemed pretty labor intensive. A few months ago, I made cauliflower rice (the main crust ingredient) to try with a curry dish. After that successful recipe test, cauliflower crust pizza recipes continued to tempt me.
Last night, I gave one a try and rocked my pizza-loving world. I found a number of similar ingredients lists on the Internet, but a recipe on 12 Tomatoes became my jumping-off point. I tweaked the spices to my liking, added fresh chopped basil, and chose goat cheese for mixing into the crust. Experts offered heaps of advice on how to cook cauliflower rice. I microwaved mine and it turned out great.
A key direction regarding crust prep was to drain all the excess water from the cooked cauliflower rice before mixing it with the other “dough” ingredients. Do it. I soaked two dishtowels and several paper towels, but it was worth the effort.
The baking crust made my kitchen smell so good I wanted to eat the air! After thirty-five minutes, I removed the crust from the oven and added these toppings:
garlic roasted tomato sauce
grilled chicken chunks
sliced black olives
grated parmesan cheese
cracked black pepper
I popped my loaded pizza back in the oven for 10 minutes. The end result looked like pizza, smelled like pizza, and sliced like pizza.
Two questions remained: would it taste as good as it looked AND would the “crust” hold together?
The answers: Yes and yes!
Besides tasting incredible, the crust held together like, well like pizza. Sturdy enough to pick up and eat. The taste was as good as any thin crust pizza I’ve ever eaten at home or in a restaurant. My family loved it, too.
Hubby said, “If you hadn’t told me the crust was made from cauliflower, I never would have known. It’s delicious.”
Cauliflower crust pizza lived up to the hype and will live in my recipe rotation for many meals to come.