Friday, October 11, 2013

Friday Night Pizza

This evening I was in the mood for pizza...Friday is always a good night for pizza to me! The only thing that I knew I wanted to put on top of it was the habanero smoked chicken sausages (by Aidells) that I used last night to make my "Pigs-in-Biscuit Blankies" with. I sliced them up and browned them and then tossed in some sliced orange bell pepper and then a little thinly sliced onion near the end. I made my favorite pizza crust (my Almond-Flax-Parmesan-Herb Crust) and then topped it with pizza sauce (by DelGrosso), freshly shredded mozzarella and then my sauteed sausage, peppers and onions and a bit of shredded Parmigiano Reggiano. When it came out of the oven, I topped it with freshly chopped Italian parsley and a few sliced cherry tomatoes -- I always like to add a few fresh uncooked herbs or ingredients after cooking to add that last blast of fresh flavor. I snapped a few photos for you to see below as well as the recipe for my favorite pizza crust. Enjoy!

Almond-Flax-Parmesan Herb Pizza Crust
Makes 1 10-inch round pizza (approximately 2 servings)

Dry Ingredients:
1/4 cup almond flour
1/4 cup golden flax seed meal (organic golden flax is milder in taste than brown)
2/3 teaspoon baking powder (aluminum free)
1/2 - 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder 
Dash cayenne pepper, optional
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste (decrease salt if using saltier cheeses and toppings)
Few grinds of freshly ground black pepper
4 - 5 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, finely grated

Wet Ingredients:
1 egg (or 1/4 cup egg substitute such as Egg Beaters)
1 tablespoon olive oil (a little more, if desired)
1 to 2 tablespoons water (start with 1 tablespoon of water and add the second, if necessary)

Toppings (Optional):  
Pizza sauce, pesto sauce, etc.
Cheese: shredded mozzarella cheese, sliced or diced fresh mozzarella, etc.
**Pre-cooked vegetables of choice: onions, green peppers, mushrooms, spinach, etc. 
**Pre-cooked meat of choice: sausage, ground beef topping, etc.
Other: artichokes, olives, pepperoni, etc.

**Tip: Fresh vegetable and meat toppings should be pre-cooked and drained to prevent crust from becoming soggy

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Mix dry ingredients together; add wet ingredients and mix well. Let the dough sit for approximately 5 minutes to thicken. 

Spread dough on a lightly oiled large pizza pan or cookie sheet lined with greased parchment paper (you can also use Reynolds non-stick foil, lightly brushed with olive oil).  Using a lightly oiled rubber spatula, press the dough out to desired shape and thickness (I usually make it about 1/4" thick -- *see note below).  Bake for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through (check crust after 15 minutes and remove from oven when it looks and feels done).  Spread with a thin layer of sauce, cheese and desired toppings (fresh vegetable and meat toppings should be pre-cooked to prevent soggy crust); place back into the oven to bake an additional 5-10 minutes to melt cheese.  If desired, run under the broiler for a few minutes to lightly brown the toppings and make the cheese bubbly (be careful not to burn it).

*Note:  For a crust that is flat, smooth and even in thickness, lightly spray a 2nd sheet of parchment paper with olive oil spray and place it on top (oiled side down) of the ball of pizza dough that is centered in the middle of your prepared pizza pan or baking sheet.  Using either your hands or the flat edge of an object (I use a big container of black pepper) press the dough smooth by swiping it the direction you want the pizza crust to go.  When it is the desired thickness and shape, carefully peel off the top layer of parchment paper...and "Voila"...perfectly flat, smooth, thin pizza crust! If you don't have parchment paper, pressing the dough out with a lightly oiled rubber spatula works just fine, too.



Anonymous said...

That looks pretty good......just might put mamma nicola out of biz!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous! It was really good...but no need to put Mamma Nicola out of business -- there is plenty of room in the world for both of us! ;-)

Anonymous said...

You are so talented! I love to check my e-mails to see what you do next. The pictures and comments are a treat. You absolutely cracked me up with the post on the pigs in blankies, and when you made tortillas. I have just started to try some grain and wheat free recipes and your recipe for chocolate chip cookies is outstanding. My husband even said they were better than with wheat flour. Thank you!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous -- I'm so glad you enjoy my blog and recipes and my goofy stories that go with them! I'm so glad that both you and your husband enjoyed the chocolate chip cookies. I think that is part of the secret to succeeding long term in wheat/grain free eating -- finding a few good recipes of foods you feared might be off limits and then relaxing and enjoying the many health benefits of getting back to eating real foods instead of processed. Once you switch to wheat and grain free eating, and experience a reduction or elimination of cravings, it makes it so much easier to stick with long term. Thanks for your kind comments -- I wish you lots of success! :-)

Luana said...

Looks like pizza perfection to me!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Thanks, Luana! :-)

Anonymous said...

This crust is very good - has anyone tried making and freezing just the crust - and topping and baking later as needed?

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi there,

Others have told me they have successfully done that. I have frozen it once or twice over the years (for about a week) and I just took it out the freezer a little while beforehand and it worked fine. :-)

Anonymous said...

I just created ( and I di mean created) this pizza, because it is a work of art, it looked as good as it tasted. My husband devoured 4 pieces before I could finish two! Wonderful recipe ! Better than anything you can buy. Thank you thank you !

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous,

I'm SO happy you and your husband enjoyed the pizza. It is one of my favorites and really played a significant part in helping me realize that I could still enjoy pizza without any wheat. So happy you are enjoying it too. Thanks so much for letting me know! :-)