Cauli is back in action! After my first successful experience with my new friend Cauli (see here), my friend Cori suggested a Cauli Pizza on my Instagram. Of course, I had to try!! I hit her up for her favorite recipes (here and here), and did my own research from there.
You guys. This is way yum. I am always surprised by the versatility of cauliflower, especially for having NEVER eaten in previously in my life. But I did see it as a chicken substitute the other day…the jury is still out on that one.
Every year on Valentine’s Day, it is a tradition for Justin and I to make pizza together. Freshman year of college, we just used the Chef Boyardee Pizza Kit…but let’s be real, we’ve grown up since then, right? Last year we attempted lots of different toppings. This year, we’ve FOUND a wonderful pizzeria (more on that below), and if we didn’t frequent there so often already (we went on Monday), I would suggest just going there to save the hassle! But then there’s this…THIS could be the new standard home-pizza. Hopefully I can find cauliflower in February!
Our pizza didn’t get very crispy, because I don’t think I removed enough of the liquid from the cauli. It actually turned out kind of like a tortilla, and it was great! It might have gotten crispy if we left it longer, but we were hungry. One site recommended wringing it out in a dishtowel but it was soooooo hot that I kind of gave up. After further research, I’ve found that in the future we may need really thin dishtowels or cheesecloth. The second time I used parchment paper. It went well, but it also had a lot more water than the first time.
We also baked it on a pizza stone, get it here. Which, truthfully, was not on our wedding registry, but we have been very thankful for it since then! They heat evenly and keep the middle from getting soggy. Preheating it is important, so go ahead and put it in when you preheat the oven.
Topping Tips: My inspiration for this pizza was the Margherita pizzas at our favorite Tulsa Pizzeria, STG (not an affiliate). Although it has some fresh mozz, I simulated it with some Monterey. Since this crust isn’t really “crusty” per se, we tried to not weigh it down with heavy toppings. The Monterey is just a nice, melty soft cheese that is great for pizza, with a mild flavor. Sprinkling it with a little kosher salt before finishing it in the oven will unleash the delicious flavors of the San Marzanos. I buy them in the can whole, but then hand-crush them. It always looks like you just murdered someone, but it’s fine. They’re worth it. Honestly, I could drink them. The second night we also used purple cauli and mozzarella pearls and squash blooms!
I hope you will try this and enJOY it as much as I did!
Have you tried any cauli substitutes yet? and if you’ve made cauli crust before, HOW did you drain the liquid??
Margherita Pizza with Cauli Crust
- 2 C. processed Cauliflower about ½ head
- 1 egg
- 1 t. Italian seasoning
- ½ t. garlic powder
- 5-6 cloves of garlic
- splash of olive oil
- ½ C. parmesan cheese
- ½ C. Monterey jack cheese
- Fresh basil leaves from our garden!
- ¼ C. – ½ C. San Marzano tomatoes crushed
- salt for finishing
Preheat the over to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and heat pizza stone.
Fold cloves of garlic in foil with a splash of olive oil.
Pulse raw cauliflower florets in a food processor until it has the consistency of rice/couscous.
Microwave (I know, right?) the cauli in a glass dish covered in plastic wrap (don’t kill me) for 3 minutes.
Strain/squeeze/wring out all moisture from cauli.
Mix in egg, garlic powder, cheese and egg to a slightly cooled off cauli.
Press mixture into a round on a pizza stone on parchment paper.
Press another sheet of parchment on the top.
Bake crust for 15 minutes. Also add the foil packet of garlic onto the edge of the stone.
Remove top parchment and bake 15-20 additional minutes, or until desired brownness/crispness
Add garlic and other toppings and place back in the oven for 5-10 minutes to heat through, or until cheese is melted.
This post has been linked up on Try A Bite Tuesday!
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