First (cauli) base

There’s this important thing you’re supposed to do when you make a new dish… read the recipe properly. And I did, the only problem was that I also read six other recipes properly, so when it came to making my pizza sauce this evening I accidentally added heat to a mixture that didn’t need it. Ummm, oops?

But hey, it was a kick-ass sauce regardless, so, ya’know, whatever. When baking I tend to be pretty precise, but when it comes to cooking I have an “understanding” with the recipe. We’re not exclusive.

The whole point was that I was having my first bash at cauliflower pizza bases.

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Husband Person once joked that we should put a camera up in the kitchen and give me my own YouTube channel… to be honest, that would make me seem a whole lot less nuts. Seeing as how I behave like I’m on a tv show EVERY TIME I cook anyway.

The general consensus with cauli bases is that you blitz the cauliflower, steam it, squeeze the bejeezus out of it then add the other ingredients. Blitz, no problem. The next two steps: a little problematic.

In lieu of a steamer I just bunged it in a bakkie with a sploosh of water and gave it about 8 minutes in the microwave. Then for the draining I was feeling all very hipster as I know for a fact I was given a cloth bag for making almond milk at Christmas last year. Yeah, but could I find it? I located the instructions crumpled in the bottom of a box, but no sign of the dratted bag itself.

My imaginary YouTube channel would’ve needed and age restriction as I clattered around the kitchen trying to find a solution. Eventually, I whipped a tea towel out of a drawer and yelled “Aha! Take that cauliflower.” Then I proceeded to burn my hands because I am not at all patient in the kitchen and didn’t give the cauliflower mush enough time to cool (like the recipe very earnestly suggested I should do. And I’m pretty sure it gave me an “I told you so” sneer as I flapped about hissing. Recipes can be jerks).

Having withstood as much pain as I could, and satisfied I’d extricated a suitable amount of liquid I chucked in the rest of the ingredients, mixed it all up and squished it out onto a baking tray.

They’re not skew, they’re rustic. Anyway, I’d like to see YOU fit two perfectly shaped circles on a tray that size. And Ven Diagram pizzas are cheating.

Once the bottoms had started to brown nicely, flipping them over took a large dose of ingenuity. These bases are nowhere near as sturdy as their wheaty counterparts. It took another sheet of baking paper, a tray, and a great deal of psyching myself up for the actual flip. But it ended in another “Aha! Take that cauliflower!” and a victory dance my imaginary subscribers would have paid good imaginary money to see.

I topped them with the kick-ass sauce, chicken, mushroom, green pepper, onion, jalapeno and cheese. And then let them crisp up around the edges in the oven for a while longer.

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All that bravado of managing to flip them not 20 minutes earlier? Completely obliterated when I made a complete dog’s breakfast of shifting the first one to a plate. That little episode raised the age restriction even more, I’m not the least bit ashamed to admit.

But besides all that, I’m satisfied with how they came out. I think next time I may add a tad more parmesan, and maybe some spices to give the bases themselves a bit more of a bite. And possibly make a bunch of tiny ones instead of the big kind that are prone to rearranging themselves into a lowcarb horror show with the smallest miscalculation involving the egg lifter.

Or next time I’m eating it straight off the baking paper. Cos I’m classy like that.

* And no, I haven’t made almond milk yet, and it doesn’t look imminent unless I find the ruddy bag.

 

RECIPE

Half head cauliflower, blitzed
Half cup parmesan (or similar)
1 tsp dried parsley
1 egg
Quarter cup coconut flour
1 tsp chopped garlic
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 230°C. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
Steam the blitzed cauliflower till tender.
Let it cool in the fridge. No, really.
Mix in parmesan, parsley, coconut flour, egg, garlic, salt and pepper.
Scoop out portions and flatten onto baking tray.
Bake till lightly browned. Flip, carefully, add toppings and bake till the cheese is melted and the edges are crisp.

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