Has everyone jumped on the cauliflower-pizza-crust-train yet?
Yes, no, maybe so?
If not, you better do it soon!
Or you could wait and try it whenever you want. Cauliflower’s not going anywhere…that I know of, at least.
Recently there has been a bunch of talk going around about “wheat belly”, claiming how evil gluten is for your body. In addition to that, there is the popular Paleo diet which recommends avoiding grains and wheat in your diet all together.
Personally, the thought of giving up bread gives me a small panic attack but if you are trying to avoid it then this cauliflower crust is one tasty way to do it!
Shiitake, Basil and Lemon Cauliflower Pizza
Crust adapted from Eating Bird Food
- 1 medium head of cauliflower
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella (I used an Italian blend)
- 2 tablespoons lemon zest
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 chopped basil
- 1 cup sliced shiitake mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic & herb seasoning (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 cup grated or shredded parmesan cheese for topping
Start by preheating the oven to 425°F and wash and cut the cauliflower into florets.
Dry the florets thoroughly and then place into a food processor and pulse until a texture similar to rice has formed.
Place the riced cauliflower into a medium size microwave-safe dish and microwave for 8 minutes until the cauliflower is cooked through.
After the cauliflower cools, blot the excess moisture with a towel or several paper towels. It is really important to remove as much moisture as possible in order to avoid a mushy crust!
In a separate medium size bowl, combine the 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella or Italian cheese blend with the egg, one tablespoon of the lemon zest, and the dry seasonings.
Stir ingredients together and then add them to the riced cauliflower and mix until well combined.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the cauliflower mixture on top.
Smooth out mixture with a spoon until you have a nice shaped pizza crust.
Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes or until crust is light golden brown.
While the crust is cooking, warm the olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat.
Sauté the garlic until fragrant and then add the mushrooms and continue to cook for about 2 minutes.
Then add the lemon juice and the remaining tablespoon of lemon zest and sauté for about 5 more minutes.
Once the crust is golden brown, remove from the oven and top with mushrooms and garlic.
Continue to layer the pizza with the fresh, chopped basil as well as the parmesan cheese.
Place pizza back in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes.
Allow to cool for a few minutes and you are ready for a light and healthy dish packed with lots of fresh flavor!
Not only is this pizza light and tasty, it is a meal you can feel relatively good about eating.
As delicious as this pizza is, you can’t expect the texture of the crust to be like real bread. It is tender and fragile so the toppings should be kept light if you want it to hold together properly. The most important tip for getting good texture is to make sure the cauliflower is as dry as possible. I tried adding an extra egg to hold it together better and that idea was no bueno. I’m telling you…don’t do it. Blech!
Also, if you are not a huge fan of cauliflower flavor then you would be better off trying this crust with tomato sauce as it helps to mask the cauliflower a little better.