I am not very good at following recipes, just sayin’.
Preparing this pizza with a little chef-in-training is super fun because it is really very difficult to mess it up.
Giving kids creative freedom in the kitchen is a great way to keep them excited about cooking.
I lined up some spices on the counter and told Matthew (6 years old) to smell each one and decide which herb(s) should go in the sauce and which herb(s) should go in the crust. He chose basil and garlic for the sauce and oregano and garlic for the crust. Isn’t it interesting that he chose such classic pizza herbs? I had a few other ones there that he loves, like Chinese 5 Spice and Fenugreek, just because I wanted to see what he’d do.
So other than shaping the crust and doing the hot/steamy stuff, Matthew did everything. He was so proud! He happily ate his GF veggie pizza. I was thrilled to see cauliflower going into that little body. He is usually quiet the carnivore.
- 1 Head of Cauliflower
- Soft cheese – cherve works well
- Herbs of choice
- Flax seeds, ground
- Olive oil, as needed
- Sea Salt
- Ground Pepper
- Parsley or green onions – something tender and green
- 5 oz can tomato paste
- Herbs of choice
- Sea salt
- Cheese – we used marbled goat cheese
- Any vegetable sliced thinly
Thick/meaty toppings don’t work well with this crust. Prosciutto with capers and feta would be dreamy with a glass of Pinot Noir. Not so kid friendly though. Sigh.
Put a large pot on to boil, you only need a couple of inches of water, salted.
Place a colander in the sink, lined with a clean tea towel.
Chop the cauliflower into big pieces then shred it in a food processor. Kids love putting food in a processor, with close supervision of course. You can also grate it by hand but you’ll need a glass of wine for that.
Place the shredded cauliflower in pot of boiling water and boil for 5 minutes.
Pre-heat oven to 425° while your waiting. Button pressing, fun for kids, pun intended.
Pour steaming hot pot of cauliflower into the tea towel lined colander. Do not use your young assistant for this step. Do not use your husband for this step as he might get freaked out by the steam and drop the pot on the kitchen floor in which case you’ll be making a much smaller pizza then you’d originally planned.
Let the cauliflower sit and cool off in the sink while you put the sauce on to simmer.
Matthew informed me that he would need gloves to get the tomato paste out of the can. I let him choose the pot we would use and I soon realized why he wanted the gloves. LOL!
After most of the tomato paste is safely in the pan it is time to add the herbs, salt and pepper. If you like other ingredients in your sauce then go for it. This is my kid-friendly version. Matthew added a pinch of garlic powder and a pinch of dried basil and for some reason thought a heaping teaspoon of salt would be a good idea. Salt control was the only time I interveined in the sauce making.
Add water to your sauce to get the consistency you need. Matthew trotted off to the bathroom with his pan to get the water – so cute. I forgot he couldn’t reach the kitchen sink.
By now your cauliflower is no longer steaming. It will be slightly nuclear in the middle though so put on some gloves. Squeeze the towel full of cauliflower until you think your hands are going to burn off then squeeze twice more.
Put the cauliflower in a mixing bowl. Add herbs of choice and salt/pepper to taste. Add about a Tablespoon of flax seeds, more if your cauliflower is enormous. Add enough soft cheese to bind. You should be able to make a ball of the mixture. Add some olive oil if it feels too dry, or just add more cheese.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and press the mixture into the shape you want.
Bake until slightly brown then flip – 10 -20 minutes each side, depends on how thick your crust is.
Add sauce then topping(s), pop back into the over for a final crisp up of the crust, just enough to melt the cheese. Enjoy!
Life is good.