I love being a Californian in DC. But I hate being a Californian who has to travel back and forth between DC and home. It’s a long, annoying flight and I frequently find myself stuck on a red eye with a screaming baby. This makes for a sleep-deprived and cranky Whit.
Luckily, I have LG to take care of me. When I returned to DC after a trip home last weekend, it had been an entire week (gasp!) since I had seen her. I was in dire need of three things: LG-time, food and sleep. And carb-free LG (I love rhyming) was looking to take her new-found love of cauliflower for a ride and make a cauliflower crust pizza.
The recipe for the cauliflower crust, which LG found here, was pretty easy. You will need 2 cups of grated cauliflower, 2 tbsp of parmesan cheese, 1 cup of mozzerella cheese and 1 egg. We doubled all of the ingredients for our batch. We like leftovers.
After you break the cauliflower down into chunks, you will need to grate the florets into smaller crumbles. I was strictly an observer but LG noted that it was extremely easy to grate up. When you’re through, it will resemble chunks of feta cheese. Mmmmm, cheese.
LG measured out 4 cups of cauliflower, put it in some cheesecloth to help it dry out and then microwaved it for 8 minutes to soften it up. Then she added in 4 tbsp of parmesan cheese and 2 cups of mozzarella (if you’re doing one batch use 2 tbsp of parmesan and 1 cup of mozzarella). We may have eyeballed the cheese measurement. A little extra won’t hurt anything.
Then LG stirred in 2 eggs. Finally, for her own twist on the recipe, she added in a few shakes of Italian seasoning. I was an extremely helpful taste-tester and then added a couple more shakes. Then she spread the whole mixture evenly over a pizza pan, sprayed it lightly with some cooking spray and stuck in in the oven.
While the crust cooked, LG whipped up some homemade tomato sauce. I’m not going to lie, I wasn’t totally paying attention here, but I think it involved 3 cans of crushed tomatoes thrown into a Vitamixer, then a can of tomato paste added in, and then it was all stirred together and heated up on the stove.
Once the crust was done baking, we pulled it out of the oven to add on all of our toppings. It was a really nice golden brown and smelled AWESOME. We probably could have eaten it right then and there.
All that was left to do was add the toppings! We dolloped on the tomato sauce, sprinkled on a bunch of cheese, threw on some fresh basil from LG’s new plant, tossed on the turkey pepperoni that we hadn’t already eaten and finally added on some chopped mushrooms.
Once the pizza came out of the oven, we dove right in. This might have been our only mistake. The cauliflower crust needs a little time to cool and harden or it crumbles up a bit too easily. However, a slightly crumbled crust did not stop it from tasting AMAZING. And it was shockingly filling. I’m usually in for at least 3 pieces of pizza but I was good and full after only 2!
It really was an amazingly easy recipe to make and it was exceptionally delicious. I’m not as carb-averse as LG but if all of her recipes taste as good as this one does, she may drag me over to the dark side. And after I got my LG-time and my food, I promptly fell asleep on the couch. Best way ever to recover from a trip home.
LG here! Now that we’ve all fallen in love with cauliflower, let’s have Round II. Cauliflower mash is such a delicious alternative to mashed potatoes. I never thought I could replace mashed potatoes, but boy was I wrong. This recipe is SO easy: a cauliflower, have a packet of cream cheese, butter, and a fork. The fork is for eating the cauliflower mash. I highly recommend using it.
First, wash your cauliflower! Always wash your veggies, and your hands.
Now, boil some water. Once the water is boiling, throw in the cauliflower. Don’t be like me, though–put it in gently. I may have burned myself. After about 10 minutes take out a piece and see if it crumbles easily. If it does, throw everything back in that strainer.
Put the cauliflower back in the pot and get to mashing!
Now, add in the cream cheese. I’d recommend adding it in slowly. It will make everything more consistent. I, however, do not have that kind of patience.
You are so close. Mash and mash and mash some more! Once it has a steady consistency, throw the butter in there. Mash some more while it melts.
Add in whatever you like in your mashed potatoes! Garlic? Absolutely! Salt! Pepper! Graaaaaaaavy!!!
Then get that fork out! It’s so delicious AND it’s a veggie.
Cauliflower is my new miracle veggie. I am not big on sitting down and just eating a vegetable (I prefer candy), so this recipe was perfect for me. I felt as if I was eating a starch, but really I was getting a HUGE serving of veggies. Trick your kids! Trick your friends! Trick yourself! Cauliflower is so versatile, so take it off that antipasto plate and cook it up real good.
Every Friday we are going to fill you in on our obsession of the week. This week’s obsession: cauliflower. This sassy little minx was once the vegetable I loved to avoid. It was the wallflower nerd vegetable that I would never dance with in high school (ugh, high school LG was the worst), and then it grew up, graduated college summa cum laude, got a great job and some experience with the ladies, and came back hotter than a pro football player. It looked at me begging to be devoured, but no! I would not have cauliflower. I just wouldn’t.
And then my life changed. I went low-carb and I needed something to replace all I had lost. What about pizza? What would I eat with lobstah tail? Vegetables are OK and all, but they were losing their allure. Even my love of green beans couldn’t replace my desire for mashed potatoes. What could fill that void? Then a friend turned me to cauliflower–that vegetable I wouldn’t even look at. I mean, come on! It full on looks like a colorless brain. No, I do not eat brain looking food.
I was desperate. I made some cauliflower mash to eat with my green beans and lobstah tail. I didn’t expect much of this brainy looking food. I was wrong. I hate being wrong, but I was wrong. Cauliflower is my taste bud’s new lover. After the first night of cooking with it, I did it again the next night. I can’t get enough. It’s so delicious, it’s a perfect replacement for starches, it’s easy, AND it is filling. Oh wait, another “and”: AND IT COUNTS AS A VEGETABLE!
Tune in next week when FlipFlopsandFreedom teaches you how to make cauliflower pizza crust and cauliflower mash ALL IN ONE POST! Eat healthier, trick your kids into eating a veggie, or just try something new. We will teach you how.
And for the love of all that is sparkly: go buy some cauliflower!