Cali’flour Meal, Pizza Crust and Paleo Pizza Crust

Image by Pixaline from Pixabay

Cauliflower Meal
1 (3-pound) head cauliflower

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Cut the cauliflower into quarters through the core, then cut out the core and leaves from each quarter in one cut. Trim any remaining core and leaves (it’s OK to leave a little of the stems from the cauliflower attached to the florets).

Break the cauliflower into approximately 2-inch florets. It’s OK if they are a little bigger or smaller — it’s more important that they be more or less equal in size. Put half of the cauliflower in a food processor and process, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula a few times, until the cauliflower is uniformly broken down to the texture of wet sand. You might be tempted to stop here, but keep on going. Continue to process, stopping to scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula a few times, until the blade easily moves the mixture around to create a wet, smooth, creamy mashed potato texture with little flecks. If any chunks larger than a green pea remain from the first batch (check by spreading the first batch over the baking sheet and running your fingers through it), add them to the second batch. Repeat with the remaining cauliflower.

Spread the cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet in an even layer and bake for 15 minutes. The object of baking is to release moisture from the cauliflower without browning it. There won’t be much of a visual change — if it starts to brown, remove it from the oven immediately. Cool the cauliflower on the sheet completely.

Put about 1/4 of the cauliflower meal in a nut milk bag or wrap it in four layers of cheesecloth. Twist, then wring the liquid out over a bowl or the sink. Break the soon-to-be meal apart, then twist again until it is as dry as you can get it. Repeat this four or five times, until you can’t squeeze out any more liquid. Expect to drain up to 2 cups liquid (the amount will vary for each batch). You should be able to form the final product into a smooth round that can crumble somewhat easily but still hold its form fairly well, like soft clay. Use as directed in your recipe, or cover and refrigerate immediately (cauliflower meal starts to turn very quickly when left out). It will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Do not freeze.


Cali’flour Pizza Crust
5 ounces (1 cup loosely crumbled) Cauliflower Meal
1/2 cup shredded low-moisture whole milk mozzarella cheese (not fresh)
1 large egg

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix with a rubber spatula to incorporate. Form the dough into a disc shape then, using your hands, press the dough out onto the prepared baking sheet to form an even 9-inch circle. Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes, until firm and lightly browned. Remove from the oven and use a metal spatula to slide the crust onto a wire rack to cool before adding your toppings. If you’re not using the crust right away, store in a zip-top freezer bag in the freezer for up to 9 months. Do not refrigerate.

Tip
Trace the bottom of a 9-inch round baking pan onto a sheet of parchment paper. Flip the parchment and use the circle as a guide for forming your crusts.


Paleo Cali’flour Pizza Crust
Makes 1 (9-inch) crust

2 tablespoons almond flour
2 tablespoons coconut flour
1 tablespoon ground chia seed (see note)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 large eggs
5 ounces (1 cup loosely crumbled) Cauliflower Meal

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parch¬ment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, coconut flour, ground chia seed, and salt. Whisk in the eggs, then crumble in the cauliflower meal and mix with a rubber spatula to incorporate. Switch to your hands and knead for about 30 seconds, until well combined and a homogenous dough is formed. Form the dough into a disc shape then, using your hands, press the dough out onto the prepared baking sheet to form an even 9-inch circle. Place in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes, until firm and lightly browned. Remove from the oven and use a metal spatula to slide the crust onto a wire rack to cool before adding your toppings. If you’re not using the crust right away, store in a zip-top freezer bag in the freezer for up to 9 months. Do not refrigerate.

Recipe provided by Cali’flour Kitchen: 125 Cauliflower-Based Recipes for the Carbs You Crave by Amy Lacey