Saturday, February 22, 2014

Saturday Night Pizza -- Grain-free Greatness

Today was a beautiful day here. I forced myself to stay home today and "rest". I did do some cooking to help pass the time. I'm having Costco withdrawals, so I may have to venture out there tomorrow if I'm up to it. I actually felt pretty good this afternoon and evening. Since I didn't do any shopping today, I decided to make pizza for dinner since I always have the ingredients for that. I also made a double batch of pizza crust this time so I could make an extra crust to bake and use as a "convenience food" at a later time. I baked it and wrapped it well after it cooled. I plan to either refrigerate it or freeze it tomorrow, depending on whether I intend to use it this coming week. I kept this evening's pizza pretty simple. I had all kinds of toppings that I could have used for it, but added simply freshly shredded mozzarella cheese, oven roasted tomatoes, Boars Head pepperoni and then topped it with sliced green onion tops after pulling it out of the oven. It turned out really good. Since it was such a pretty afternoon and evening, I snapped a number of different photos of the various stages of my pizza making so I could have an excuse to step outside on our patio. I included the pizza crust recipe below. If you'd like to see another post where I did step by step photos, click here: Pizza. Enjoy!

Pizza dough is spread and ready to be baked
Baked and fresh out of the oven
Topped with freshly shredded mozzarella cheese (I did not use sauce)
Topped with oven roasted tomatoes (packed in oil) instead of using pizza sauce
Topped with Boars Head pepperoni and ready to pop into the oven
Fresh out of the oven and sprinkled with sliced green onion tops
Now THIS is pizza...
People always wonder if you can pick my pizza up to eat it...YES, here it is leaning against a glass -- can you do that with other grain-free pizza crusts?

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...

Have I told lately that I love you :P

Gourmet Girl Cooks said..., but one can never have too many people that love them! :-)

SLB said...

Do you get your Boars Head pepperoni at the Publix Deli or Costco? Is it pre-sliced? I love your pizza crust. It is my go to when I make pizza.

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi SLB -- I usually get it at Publix and yes, it is pre-sliced. They have a regular version and a turkey version. I've used both. The one I used here is the regular version. :-)

vaccinenurse said...

I feel like we are new best friends! I Do miss pizza but not the cramping etc with wheat products. This looks wonderful! Last night I made the pot pie recipe using left over lamb. I had left over prime rib/wine stock left over and used asparagus, carrot, celery in the filling. The crust was perfect! Thanks for bringing low carb, sugar free, grain free eating to my table!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi vaccinenurse -- Thanks so much. So glad you enjoyed using the crust -- your filling sounds awesome! How clever to use it over your leftovers and create a whole new dish! Thanks, again! :-)

CyberSis said...


I love suggestions like making two crusts and wrapping one for use later! I'll have to try to find the Boar's Head pepperoni ... I'm still searching for a brand I like, but I haven't come across B.H. yet. I've also been looking for Aidell's sausage ... our Costco doesn't carry it.

Speaking of the pot pie ... last week I was able to carefully lift the crust off the top of the left-over pie and reheat it separately in the oven for a few minutes (this works best if the pie is very cold, just out of the fridge.) The "insides" of the pie went into the microwave. I replaced the crust back on the pie to serve it. Reheating it that way turned out really well, if I do say so myself! :-)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi CyberSis -- What a brilliant idea about lifting and reheating the crust in the oven and the filling part in the microwave. You get to reheat it to its full "original glory"! I will have to remember that and give it a try. That's the downfall of reheating it in the microwave (the crust gets soft)...but you found a way to solve that problem. Absolutely brilliant! :-)

CyberSis said...


Well ... I don't know that *anyone* has ever used "brilliant" and my name in the same paragraph ... especially when it comes to cooking! :-) Thanks for making my day. (Blushing profusely)!

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi CyberSis -- Well, in my opinion it is a brilliant idea on your part and if nobody has ever called you that before...obviously it was careless overlooking on their part and it was long overdue! :-)

Anonymous said...

Wow! This looks amazing! I've done the cauliflower pizza crust, but would love to try this one. I don't eat parm cheese - do you have a suggestion for a replacement? Thanks! :)

Gourmet Girl Cooks said...

Hi Anonymous -- you could try substituting almond flour for the Parmesan -- you may want to add a dash more salt since Parmesan adds a bit of saltiness and flavor and almond flour is fairly neutral. Let me know if you try it and it works and you like it. :-)

Anonymous said...

Your idea of removing the crust to reheat the filling also works great when reheating any seafood/fish or meat org vegetable that you don't want to overcook. Heat only the ingredients you want heated and THEN place the unheated item in the warmth. Your meat or vegetables aren't dry, hard, chewy or soggy that way.