charlotte eats cauliflower pizza
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Pizza with Cauliflower Base

Vegan, Low Protein (PKU), Gluten Free and Dairy Free

Total Protein Count: 7.7 g Protein
2 x 20cm pizzas or 4 Serves = 2 g Protein per serve

I love to make pizza! This meal brings the family together on a weekend, allows everyone a bit of creativity in the kitchen and can be made as individual sizes to suit everyone’s preferences and dietary requirements. It is also a great way of adding more vegetables to a picky preschooler’s menu in the form of a cauliflower base and vegetable-based sauce such as sun-dried tomato sauce or kale pesto.

I have experimented with this base several ways and found this recipe below to be the softest and most like the traditional pizza crusts that people would be used to…but better!

The difference is in the binding agent. Egg or apple sauce.

If you are allowed egg in your diet, you’ll find that the single egg in the base adds a fluffy quality to the base where the apple sauce makes it more dense. Don’t get me wrong, the taste is there for both ingredients. It’s only a textural difference.

As a PKU mother, I tend to find it more difficult to add that 1 extra gram of protein to Charlotte’s diet. I know that sounds odd, but you get into a routine and comfort zone with protein allowances (or other count-able restrictions). As of late, I found that by adding a single egg to a large family dish that then gets broken down to many smaller meals actually helps me add a tiny bit of protein to her daily allowance. Please note that this is only my opinion and should be considered with your own dietary restrictions!

Apart from the pizza base, the sauce is another area where vegetables can be added (or hidden).  In this recipe I used the left over raw tomato sauce from my Vegetable Spaghetti recipe. A little goes a long way and I used it in pasta dishes, school lunch wraps and of course the pizza. Whether or not you are on a raw diet, you’d love this sauce!

With the toppings, have fun with it. I’ve listed some suggestions, but this is completely up to your own individual preferences. I find that the freshness of the pizza base combined with the raw tomato sauce actually lends itself better to a few light toppings with no cheese. It’s completely up to you.

Have fun and give it a go!

charlotteats cauliflower pizza base

Base:

340 grams / about half a cauliflower, chopped into florets
60 grams gluten free flour (1.2 g protein) or low protein flour *see notes
1 organic free-range egg (6.5 g protein) or 1/2 cup / 100 g apple puree **for a vegan / PKU option, see notes
½ teaspoon sea salt
2 pinches freshly cracked white pepper
2 pinches dried oregano
2 pinches caraway seeds

Sauce of your choice:

sun-dried tomato sauce or kale pesto

Suggested Toppings:

cherry tomatoes (chopped)
sliced mushrooms
sliced zucchini
a handful of pitted kalamata olives
fresh basil leaves
sprinkle of vegan (low protein) cheese substitute

Optional Protein-based Toppings:

prosciutto
rocket or arugula
balsamic vinegar
pear, sliced

Procedure:

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.

To make the base, place the cauliflower in a food processor and blend until a rice-like texture forms. Place this in a nut milk bag or tea towel and kneed out excess water until completely dry. Place the cauliflower in a large bowl and add the flour, egg or apple puree (for vegan or lower protein option) and herbs. Mix to form a smooth, thick batter.

Mound the cauliflower mixture onto the centre of the lined tray and, place the sheet of greased baking paper over the top. Spread out evenly to form a 20 cm round; careful to retain a thickness especially around the edges. Remove the top layer of paper. Cook in the oven for 10 minutes or until cooked through. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.

Return the cauliflower base to the baking tray and evenly spread a few tablespoons of sauce over the top, scatter on toppings of your choice.

Transfer the pizza to the oven and cook for 5 minutes until the crust is lightly golden and crispy.

Slide the pizza onto a chopping board, cut into 4-6 wedges.

 

Notes:

– For low protein diets, use your dietician’s recommended no or low protein flour (such as Loprofin) to ensure the lowest protein count. Brown rice flour is fairly low in protein at 11.4g of Protein per 1 cup (158g), but serving sizes would vary on your daily protein allowance. For our mixed intolerance family, we like to make one pizza with buckwheat flour for a gluten free option, and another low protein version. Each person adds their own toppings to make it even more individual.

– For low protein or vegan diets, the egg can be replaced with apple puree. While the puree still acts as a binding agent for the crust, the end result is slightly more dense and thin. The egg give the final crust a thicker, lighter texture and only adds an additional 1 g of protein after the final serve calculations (depending on your final serving size and additional toppings). Only add the egg if your diet allows it and adjust the final protein count accordingly.

– To add protein to the pizza, you can mix 2 tablespoons of chia seeds to 8 tablespoons of water. Allow it to sit for around ten minutes, until all the water is absorbed and the chia has formed a gel. Add the chia seed gel to the cauliflower and apple puree before adding in the flour.

 

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