Coconut Flour Pizza Crust
From my Instagram:
I took my love for all things pizza home with me after 2 years in Italy. Ever since, I have been crafting away at different gluten free crusts. I am not trying to recreate the glutenous wonders of a Napolatana pizza nor do I intend on duplicating the perfectly crispy and chewy pizzas of the north. But I am trying to make the simplest, most bad-ass f-ing paleo pizza crust that I can!
Those three years I spent in the Mediterranean --one in France and two in Italy-- was one of the most influential phases of my life. It was when I fell in love and when I learnt how to cook. Two things that are not mutually exclusive. I followed this man to Italy and we ate and cooked our way throughout the campagna. During this phase, we were knee deep in veganism and I was determined to recreate every classical Italian dish as vegan. I concocted meals out of insane amounts of tofu, vegan mayo, seitan, and margarine, and served white bread at every meal. I thought I was a culinary goddess. Yes, without a doubt I learnt more than I ever thought I could about slow food and fresh, local, and sustainable growing. And yes, we eat a ton of fruit and vegetables but everything else was basically white and fake and I couldn't pronounce half the ingredients in the processed food I was eating. But I truly believe that for something to taste good, it had to be just like the original. That the veggie ground round in my pasta sauce had to exactly replicate the taste found in a classic bolognese or that tiramisu could be recreated with tofu and processed and prepackaged cookies. Ugh!
This was a huge lesson that shaped the way I cook today.
Flash forward a few years and I look back at this time with a tiny cringe. But, only a tiny one. If it hadn't been for the way I was eating all those years I may not have dedicated so much time to cooking and perfecting the craft. Because, let's face it, my vegan creations were shit hot. Also, I may not have chosen the path I am on right now. If it hadn't been for the lessons I learnt in the world of faux meat I might not be the advocate for real and whole foods that I am today.
Like I said in my Instagram post, I am not trying to rebuild Rome. Rice made with cauliflower doesn't really taste like white rice and I am more than ok with it. Just like this pizza here. It doesn't taste like a pie from Napoli and I don't think it should. Who cares?
I am a big fan of adding fresh toppings to my pizza once it's baked. My top choices are fresh tomatoes, greens of any kind (rocket is a classic & bitter microgreens are my favourite), a spicy infused oil, fried eggs, etc.
Coconut Flour Pizza Crust
Combine in the first medium bowl:
3/4 cup coconut flour, plus 1 tbsp set aside for rolling
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp arrowroot powder
1/2 tsp salt
Combine in the second medium bowl:
1/3 cup melted lard or oil
1 tsp honey or sugar (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. and line an 11" x 7" square pan with parchment paper.
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Set aside. In another bowl, whip together the wet ingredients until slightly fluffy. Add the dry ingredients to the wet. Mix until completely incorporated.
Pour the dough on to the lined baking pan. The dough might be quite sticky, so dust the top with the extra coconut flour to help you roll. Roll the dough out to fill the pan the best you can. Mine fell a couple of inches short of the corners.
Bake the crust, without toppings, for 15 mins. Once the edges start to brown, take the crust out and add your toppings of choice. Bake for another 5-8 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. This is now a great time to fry up a duck egg for the extra hungry person in your life!
Move the pizza to a solid surface for cutting. Add any fresh ingredients you'd like (and a duck egg). I prefer pizzas to be 'interactive' and like to leave it on the cutting board and let everyone grab their own slices and savour the gooey pizza goodness.