Cauli-Crust Pizza Topped With Creamy Ricotta, Fresh Basil, Cilantro, Garlic & Arugula & Braised Cherry Tomatoes a.k.a. The-Only-Thing-In-The-World-That-Can-Make-You-Forget-About-REAL-Pizza-I-Swear-Try-Me!
MORNING MES AMOURS! <3 After several requests & as promised (I really do impress myself with how on top of my game I am with keeping my promises. Aren’t you impressed? DON’T LIE. I KNOW YOU ARE), I present you with my Cauli-Crust Pizza Topped With Creamy Ricotta, Fresh Basil, Cilantro, Garlic & Arugula & Braised Cherry Tomatoes a.k.a. The-Only-Thing-In-The-World-That-Can-Make-You-Forget-About-REAL-Pizza-I-Swear-Try-Me! This babe is LEGIT THE DEFINITION OF SLASHING CARBS – BIGTIME. AFTER YOU TRY HER, PIZZA WILL NEVER BE THE SAME. I SWEAR. If, like me, you found this concept UBER-WEIRD before I actually gave it a shot, this recipe will MAKE. YOU. FALL. IN. LOVE. Wait for it… AT-FIRST-BITE. And just like that, POOF! Any & all “weirdness” you associated with the wonderfulness that is CAULIFLOWER PIZZA (Omg… just saying it… I die. Melt. Go to Cloud 9. All that heavenly stuff) WILL VANISH.
THINK: PERFECTLY baked & browned crust. Smooth & creamy ricotta. Sweet, yet savoury tomato sauce. Crisp & fresh arugula. Juicy cherry tomatoes. Fresh garlic, basil & cilantro. AND LOADS OF SPICES ON SPICES EVERYWHERE!!… Kay, but how wet is your phone right now from all that drool? (EW). #SorryNotSorry. No, but seriously, you don’t understand HOW FLAVOURFUL THIS BABE IS (The zesty tomato sauce… the crispy oh-so-magical crust).
OH & CAN WE JUST DISCUSS HOW IT IS THE PERFECT ALTERNATIVE to the full-of-calories-&-sugar-&-all-that-other-bad-stuff store-bought & delivery pizza. I SWEAR, THIS RECIPE WILL LEGIT MAKE YOU FORGET THAT THAT STUFF EVEN EXISTS. She will go from being considered an “alternative” to becoming your “go-to”.
Before I get into the nitty gritty of how to make this perfect-cauli-pizza-crust, I just thought I would put it out there once & for all that YES, MY CAULIFLOWER OBSESSION IS STILL VIVID & ALIVE. NO, SAID CAULIFLOWER OBSESSION WILL NEVER, EVER END. & YES, I WILL CONTINUE TO INNOVATE WITH THIS BABE & PROVIDE YOU WITH ALL THE YUMMY RECIPES I CONCOCT IN MY KITCH (Between 5:00 & 7:00AM, to be precise, WADDUP?).
Since I love you guys so much & I’m anticipating that ONE CRUST WILL NOT BE ENOUGH, this recipe will give you enough cauli-dough to make TWO PERF CRUSTS (And, well… if you are honest with yourself & believe that two crusts won’t be enough – IT WON’T BE – double the batch… or triple it… or quadruple it… or cinqtuple it? OKAY, “cinqtuple” is not a word, BUT YOU CAUGHT MY DRIFT, I HOPE). OK my loves, here’s what you need to whip up this beautifulness:
FOR THE CAULI-CRUST:
- 5 cups of roughly chopped cauliflower (About 1 medium head of cauli…but depends how big it is!). Like I’ve mentioned in previous recipes, PLEASE, APPRECIATE, LOVE & CARE FOR YOUR FOOD PROCESSOR & IT WILL LOVE YOU BACK FOREVER & EVER, a.k.a. do your very best to trim the cauli-stems as much as you can, which also implies… DON’T BE LAZY!;
- ¼ cup (about 2 large) egg whites (Or two eggs);
- ¼ shredded mozzarella cheese (NOM NOM NOM!!!!);
- 2 tbsp. of grated Parmesan or Romano cheese (MORE NOM NOM NOM!!!!);
- MY LOVES, do not SKIMP ON THE CHEESE, okay? It acts as a binder with the egg to hold your cauli-crust together, PLUS IT TASTES SO EFFING GOOD. No, but seriously, skimp on the cheese & you will get a cauli-mash instead of a cauli-crust, PAS DOWN, TOI?
- 1 tbsp. of organic extra-virgin olive oil;
- 1 tsp. of Italian seasoning (P.S. If you don’t have this beautiful seasoning at home, GO BUY IT. No, but seriously, check out my previous post, where I tell you guys how to whip up a quick DIY Italian seasoning. SUPER QUICK & EASY!);
- ¼ tsp. of freshly ground black pepper;
- 1/8 tsp. of salt;
FOR THE CAULI-PIZZA TOPPPPINGS (MMMM):
- ½ cup of canned crushed tomatoes;
- ½ tsp. of garlic powder;
- ½ tsp. of onion powder;
- ½ tsp. of Italian seasoning;
- 1/4 cup of ricotta (Feel free to substitute the ricotta with more shredded mozzarella, goat chose, cheddar cheese, or any other cheese or cheesy-ish topping BECAUSE LET’S BE HONEST, EVERY PIZZA NEEDS SOME CHEESE!);
- 1 clove of fresh garlic, minced;
- 2 tbsp. of fresh basil, FINELY CHOPPED (Your fave, I know!);
- 2 tbsp. of fresh cilantro, FINELY CHOPPED (YEP, AGAIN!);
- TONS of arugula;
- TONS of cherry tomatoes;
NOW, HOW DO YOU COMBINE ALL THESE BEAUTIFUL TOMATO-Y/CHEES-Y/HERB-Y/SPICE-Y ingredients to create the perfect little cauli-pizza? LET ME EXPLAIN!
- Preheat your oven to 400 degrees & line a baking sheet with parchment paper;
- Pulse your cauli (a.k.a. LIFE) in a food processor, until reduced to the consistency of coarse breadcrumbs (It’s legit cray what one can accomplish with a food processor #excusetobelazywaddup?);
- Transfer the cauli to a large MICROWAVE-SAFE bowl (My loves, there’s a reason I capitalized those words. I deny all further liability if you decide, for who knows what insane reason, not to use a MICROWAVE-SAFE Okay? Thanks!), COVER & microwave for 3 ½ minutes;
- Uncover the cauli & str. RE-COVER it & microwave for another 3 ½ minutes or until it’s hot, FLUFFY & soft;
- NOW, FOR THE MOST IMPORTANT PART, A.K.A. THE PART THAT DETERMINES IF YOUR CAULI-CRUST WILL BE SUCCESSFUL (So pay very, very close attention!!!!): Transfer the cauli to a mesh strainer & DRAIN IT THOROUGHLY. Using a clean dishtowel (or paper towels), press out AS MUCH MOISTURE AS POSSIBLE. GUYS, there will be A LOT OF EXCESS LIQUID. GET IT ALL OUT!!!!;
- Return the cauli back to the bowl & add all the other crust ingredients (Guys, I am NOT listing them. Like, I just did… just SCROLL UP!). MIX WEL UNTIL EVERYTHING IS COMBINED!!!!
- Now, to form the MOST perfectly-perfect-little-round-crusts, evenly divide the cauli mixture into two circles on parchment-lined baking sheet (They should be about ¼ inch thick & 7 inches in diameter – TAKE OUT A RULER. CAN’T HELP YOU WITH THAT BABES). CRUCIAL: GREASE YOUR PARCHMENT PAPER (My loves, when I made cauli-pizza the first time, my crust LEGIT stuck to the parchment paper & it would NOT lift under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES, so please, I learned my lesson & now I’m giving you guys a chance!). Use a rubber spatula to round your edges.
- BAKE THE CRUSTS UNTIL THE TOPS HAVE BROWNED. This should take about 35 minutes, but please, my loves, WATCH YOUR CRUSTS. CARE FOR YOUR CRUSTS. LOVE YOUR CRUSTS. NOBODY LIKES BURNT PIZZA (AND YES, THIS IS STILL CONSIDERED PIZZA!!!);
- While your crusts are baking, combine the crushed tomatoes, garlic powder, onion powder & Italian seasoning & MIX WELL!!!;
- Once the babies (a.k.a. the crusts) are BAKED, BROWNED & READY TO BE TOPPED, top them with the tomato sauce, leaving a ½ inch border. Top the sauce with the creamy ricotta, fresh garlic, fresh basil & cilantro, arugula & cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle with some ‘MO freshly ground black pepper, garlic powder &/or Italian seasoning & some spicy olive oil!
- Now, BAKE THESE BABIES AGAIN UNTIL YOUR KITCHEN SMELLS LIKE PIZZA-HEAVEN and the CRUST IS CRISPY A-F (This should take 5-7 minutes… but again, DON’T TAKE YOUR CHANCES. WATCH YOUR PIZZAS!).
ET VOILÁ! YOUR PIZZAS ARE READY. You are now free to devour them, COMPLETELY GUILT-FREE! Enjoy love bugs! OH & FOOD PORN:
Enjoy love bugs! Xoxo!