This feels a little like cheating. I mean, this recipe is so easy and there are countless variations of it on the interwebs, so I feel like a bit of an impostor posting my version here. I hadn’t planned to post it here (which I will use to explain the lack of step-by-step photos) but as some of you have asked for the recipe, here it is.
In case you didn’t know it, this caulipizza is a Banting-friendly dish – it is low carb and the cheese suitably amps the fat content. If you’re after something that tastes exactly like regular pizza, this is not for you. I sympathise though – more than anything else, I miss the ‘yeastiness’ of regular pizza dough. Just not enough to want to ditch this way of life. It does help that this pizza is rather delicious.
The toppings suggested below are a product of my preferences – simple and vegetarian – but put whatever the hell you like on there, I’m not your mother.
Caulipizza – makes 3 large, thin-crust pizzas
This recipe is not labour intensive but does require a bit of time when it comes to making the base to allow the steamed cauliflower to cool (see below). It would pay to premake the base if time is an issue.
You will need
For the pizza base
- 2 heads of cauliflower, cleaned and broken into large florets
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder (optional)
- ½ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 2 cups shredded mozarella
- 4 free range eggs, beaten
- salt to taste
For the tomato sauce
- 3 Tablespoons olive oil
- 1 shallot, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 x 400g tinned diced tomatoes (preferably roma)
- large handful fresh basil leaves, washed and roughly chopped
- salt to taste
For the toppings
- ~2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves
- 300g sliced mushrooms
- ½ cup black olives (I prefer unpitted but make sure you warn diners)
- 2 cups shredded mozzarella
- 1½ capsicum, sliced (I used a mixture of green and red)
- 1 red onion, sliced
- 4 Tablespoons sliced jalapeños (in jar)
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese
- olive oil for drizzling (I used chilli flavoured olive oil)
- salt and pepper to taste
- Blitz the cauliflower in a food processor until it resembles coarse grains (not too fine).
- Steam for 8 minutes or until tender then allow to cool. You can use a microwave for this step but I won’t encourage it because I hate microwaves.
You can make the tomato sauce while you wait.
- Preheat oven to 180°C (fan forced).
Line three pizza trays/dishes with baking paper. Set aside.
- Transfer to a muslin cloth and wring out as much liquid as possible (don’t try this if it hasn’t cooled down enough to handle). This step is crucial to making a crisp base. No one wants a soggy crust. I outsource this step to the muscle in the house.
- In a large bowl, combine the ‘dry’ cauliflower with remaining ingredients until well mixed. The mixture will be wet and nothing like regular pizza dough but don’t worry, that’s normal.
- Carefully divide the base mixture onto the three lined trays. Using your hands, gently press down and outwards until you have a thin, even base. Smooth out any ragged edges. Or don’t if you’re after a more rustic look.
- Bake in the hot oven for approximately 12 minutes until golden and crisp.
Allow to cool before topping. You do not need to take them off the trays if vented.
Make the tomato sauce
- Heat the olive oil in a deep saucepan then sauté the shallot until softened. Add garlic and cook for about a minute until the mixture is translucent.
- Stir in the tomatoes and reduce the heat. Allow to cook for about 10 minutes so that the tomatoes break down and the sauce thickens.
- Remove from heat, stir in the basil leaves and season well. Allow to cool.
Assemble the pizza
- Preheat oven to 190°C
- Smear a third of the tomato sauce evenly onto each of the prepared bases. Sprinkle some oregano over this.
- To each pizza base, add mushrooms and olives then top with mozzarella.
I learnt this tip from my father – always put the ingredients that don’t really need cooking under the cheese. So if you’re using ham, for example, pop it on the tomato sauce but under the cheese.
- Arrange the capsicum, onion and jalapeños as you fancy followed by a sprinkling of the parmesan.
- Give the pizza a good drizzle of olive oil, a shake of salt and some cracked pepper.
- Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until toppings are done to your liking.
I like mine golden, Mr Meow prefers shades of caramel.
My opinion is that this pizza goes best with a binge TV show session and some sparkling water. MInd you I haven’t tried it with scotch yet. If you beat me to it, let me know if it is a suitable combo.
Share your caulipizza photos with me on Instagram and Facebook.
Tag #mGmeats @machinegunmeow