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Sep 02 2016

Do you ever have any cravings for something savory and yummy? I sure do, and my biggest, most favorite is pizza! I love to eat pizza! I had 4 girls in 5 years many a moon ago and while pregnant what I most wanted to eat was pizza. I would call George at our local pizza place and all I had to say was “Hi George,” and he would reply, “one pepperoni pizza coming up."  Now some 40+ years later, pizza is still my favorite food! Yes, the style has changed to wood burning thin crust with gourmet toppings, but it is still my favorite go to treat 😊 (If you have not yet tried La Rustica pizza in our beautiful Sayulita village, you must. It is very delicious!)

I am always picking and choosing my battles, and my biggest food battle these days is carbohydrates. So, what does a pizza lover like me do when she craves a pizza, but is concerned about the carbs? Well, if you were me, you would search for the perfect alternative, and I am here to tell you that I have discovered the “best” no carb pizza crust …ever. A no carb pizza? Impossible, you say. You won't believe this because I surely didn’t, but here is the “secret ingredient."  It is made from CAULIFLOWER!!! Yes, cauliflower! 

Please do not let the idea of a cauliflower pizza crust stop you from indulging in pizza. Keep reading and you will see how delicious, easy, and fun this is to create at home in your Sayulita kitchen.

INGREDIENTS for CRUST:

-A white whole head of cauliflower. *We are so very lucky that many of the tiendas in Sayulita sell cauliflower straight from the garden. In Sayulita I almost missed seeing this beauty at Lydia’s tienda because it was covered in its own leaves. How fresh and local is that? 

-1/4 cup finely grated Regianno Parmesan Cheese

-1/4 cup finely grated Mozerella or White Cheddar like Tillamook **Alas Blancas has a nice selection of cheese

-1/4 tsp salt

-1/2 tsp dried basil leaves** dried herbs can be purchased at our Friday El Mercado del Pueblo in Sayulita. (This reopens in November)

-1/2 tsp dried oregano leaves **Crushing leaves between your fingers before adding brings out their natural oil = more flavor

-1/2 tsp garlic powder (Please be sure that it is not garlic salt)

- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper or ancho chili pepper .. Optional

-1 egg

INGREDIENTS for PIZZA TOPPINGS:

This is where you get to be creative, to go wild. Any melting cheeses that you prefer and whatever toppings you choose. A few suggestions are: Pesto (basil, arugula, cilantro & italian flat leaf parsley), chimmichuri sauce, tomato sauce, carmelized onions, roasted garlic, kalamata olives, dried figs, thinly sliced rounds of sauteed zucchini seasoned with thyme, sundried tomatoes, chorizo, roasted chicken, Italian Sausage meat cooked and seasoned with oregano, pepperoni, bacon, grated cheddar, Manchego goat cheese, feta, etc.

METHOD:

-Break cauliflower into florets and pulse in food processor. If you do not have a processor, grate on large box grater

-Place in large glass bowl and microwave, covered for 4 minutes

-Turn out onto clean dish towel, spread out to cool for 10 minutes

-Close up dish towel and wring very thoroughly until no more liquid comes out *Please do not rush this step or eliminate it. You need cauliflower to be as dry as possible or crust will be soggy.

-To large bowl add the squeezed cauliflower, egg, cheeses, herbs and spices, and blend all together very well. I like to use my hands for this step to ensure all is well combined.

-Place a cookie sheet upside down in oven and preheat to 425

-Spray a large piece of parchment paper with cooking spray. (I like to use coconut oil spray) 

-Flatten “cauliflower dough” into pizza shape. About 1/8"-1/4" thick, making sure that edges are firmly shaped. You will get 2 crusts from 1 whole cauliflower.

-Carefully transfer crusts on parchment to preheated pan 

-Bake approximately 12-17 minutes, until crusts have browned nicely on top.

-Remove from oven, turn upside down onto cooling rack so that air can circulate around. 

-Add your favorite toppings 

-Bake in oven or in barbecue until cheese is melted

-Put a couple of spoonfuls of crema (available in any Sayulita tienda) inn a small plastic bag, cut a tiny tip off one corner and twist until able to pipe crema onto finished pizza

-Slice and enjoy

You will not believe that you are eating a vegetable crust! Amazing!

In the next El Sayulero, I am going to show you how to make Edible Candied Flowers... So cool!