This incredible pizza was a work in progress for quite a while. I had wanted to make a soft flat bread pizza crust and thought cauliflower would be perfect for it. I was intrigued by the idea of using a vegetable I normally didn’t like (yes, I know it’s so wrong to dislike cauliflower) and turning it into a dish I would absolutely love. Funny, how vague ideas can turn into scrumptious reality Rosemary Cheese Crackers with Oregano Hemp Dip. I found plenty of cauliflower pizza crust recipes but they all included eggs and/or grains which wouldn’t work for me. I also wanted to dehydrate my crust instead of baking it so that was a challenge too. Or so I thought. Sometimes things are only difficult in our minds.
In case you haven’t noticed, many a gluten-free soul has been chasing cauliflower to replace everything from potatoes to rice to sauces, and even popcorn. And why not? Cauliflower steams up quickly and can be easily blended and processed. It’s also mild tasting and fairly soft. You can serve like mashed potatoes, blend into sauces, and even slice and grill it like steak. And the virtues don’t stop there. Cauliflower is also enormously healthy and a great companion for weight loss. It’s loaded with vitamin C, antioxidants, potassium, phosphorus and B vitamins, and is an anti-inflammatory. Okay, I’ve now talked myself into liking it a lot. Needless to say, cauliflower turned out to be a great choice for this crust.
I needed a binder for the pizza crust and turned to buckwheat as the alternative to grain flour. Buckwheat is a seed not a grain but it can play the same role as a grain. The difference is that buckwheat breaks down more easily than grains and is also gluten-free. If you are gluten-sensitive and avoiding grains, look up buckwheat. It’s your friend. If by chance you don’t have any buckwheat on hand, no worries. You can substitute with most any flour and still produce a great crust.
My first attempt at raw sprouted pizza crust didn’t pan out very well. The crust was too soft and wouldn’t hold up to the toppings. I didn’t dehydrate it long enough. Like so many dehydrator recipes, it can be tricky figuring out just when enough is enough. I also used broccoli which made the crust a little bitter. The second time around I substituted the broccoli with cauliflower. It worked like a charm.
Once the crust was spread out and scored, it was dehydrated to a soft almost bread-like consistency. But it’s solid enough to hold in your hand with toppings; like real pizza. It was exactly what I hoped it would be. I am now a converted cauliflower lover, especially for pizza.
No pizza can go without a sauce so I whipped up this peppery pumpkin seed sauce to compliment the flavors of the crust. The truth is I happened to have a large bag of pumpkin seeds hanging out in my refrigerator that were just begging to be used. I love using pumpkin seeds for sauces Creamy Pumpkin Seed Peppercorn Dressing so creating yet another one for this pizza felt so right. With the pumpkin seeds went figs, avocado, onion and garlic, and seasonings. My sauce turned out creamy and thick with lots of charisma and spark. ‘Spark’ as in oodles of flavor. Savory with a hint of sweetness and spice. I think hubby could have eaten the sauce all by itself.
I topped my pizza with sliced vegetables and zinged it one more time with cracked black pepper. I don’t think I’ll ever look at pizza the same way again. I hope you’ll enjoy this delicious pizza with the same enthusiasm as we did. It’s a delightful change of pace and certainly put my cauliflower phobia to rest.
This recipe is raw, dairy/nut/gluten-free and serves 4 – 8 persons.
Cauliflower Flat Bread Pizza w/ Spiced Pumpkin Seed Sauce
- Golden flax seed oil has a nice subtle buttery flavor that works so well in this recipe, especially in the crust. You can substitute with extra virgin olive oil or Non-Dairy Whipped Butter work great too.
- You can substitute the dried herbs with fresh, as long as you keep the quantities consistent with the recommended amounts.
- I freeze the cauliflower florets first then thaw before using. Thawed frozen is easier to blend and creates a smoother texture. It’s optional as fresh works fine too.
- Try using colored cauliflower for added interest and flavor.
Cauliflower Flat Bread Pizza Crust:
- 3 level cups cauliflower florets, thawed frozen or fresh
- 1 cup sprouted buckwheat flour or other flour of choice
- 2 Tbsp fresh minced parsley or 1 Tbsp dried parsley (optional)
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
- 4 Tbsp golden flax seed oil or extra virgin olive oil or other oil of choice (optional)
- 1 – 2 Tbsp coconut/palm sugar or other sweetener of choice to taste
- 1/2 – 1 tsp sea salt to taste
- 1/4 tsp ground white or black pepper
- 1/4 cup water (if using fresh cauliflower)
- additional water to process as needed
- Add all ingredients except the minced fresh herbs to a food processor.
- Process until smooth. This will take a couple of minutes. The mixture will be thick like moist dough.
- Add the herbs and pulse until well incorporated.
To dehydrate: Transfer the mixture to a solid dehydrator sheet and spread into a large pizza shape about 1/4 inch thick. It will almost cover the dehydrator sheet. Score into desired slices. Dehydrate at 115 degrees for about 4 hours. Carefully flip the crust over onto a mesh dehydrator sheet, peeling it carefully off the solid dehydrator sheet. Place the crust back in the dehydrator and dehydrate for another 2 – 3 hours or until fairly dry yet still pliable. It can be served immediately.
To bake: Spread the mixture on a parchment lined cookie sheet to about 1/4-inch thickness. You can shape however you want. Score into desired slices. Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until golden brown around the edges. Remove. It’s ready to serve.
Yields one 12-inch pizza crust. Can be stored separately refrigerated up to a week and frozen up to 2 months.
Spiced Pumpkin Seed Sauce:
- 1/2 cup finely ground pumpkin seeds
- 2 – 3 medium-sized trimmed Turkish figs
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 garlic clove (optional)
- 1 small dried bay leaf
- 1 Tbsp dried minced onion
- 1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp golden flax seed oil or extra virgin olive oil (optional)
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp ground cayenne
- Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until very smooth. I added the minced onion last for a little texture but you can blend it in at the beginning for smoother sauce.
- Set aside or refrigerate until ready to use.
- Yields 1 1/4 cups sauce.
- Can be stored separately refrigerated up to a week and frozen up to 2 months.
Assorted Suggested Toppings:
- thinly sliced red onion
- sliced mushrooms
- thinly sliced tomatoes
- sliced fresh or dried apricots or figs
- sliced bell pepper
- whole peppercorns
- splash of fresh lemon
- chopped olives
- any other toppings you want
- Spread Spiced Pumpkin Seed Sauce over the Cauliflower Flat Bread Pizza Crust.
- Add Toppings of choice.
- Serve immediately. You can also dehydrate or bake to warm but it’s great as is.