Wow Pizza!And do I mean WOW! My guys wanted pizza for lunch today, so that meant that I needed to make some for myself. There are a couple recipes for gluten free pizza crusts that I really like, but today I wanted to design my own. I could not have been happier with the results! I even
burned the roof of my mouth from needing to eat a piece right out of the oven. I remember turning the piece around and looking at it from all angles, wanting to find the right spot to bite. Yes, I fully realized that I would be scorching my tender mouth by eating it so hot from the oven. I threw caution to the wind and bit it anyway. It was scorching hot. It was completely cooked through the middle. It was tender, chewy like "real pizza dough". It was full of amazing flavor and the aroma was indescribable. And that was just the crust description! Then add the toppings. ODG! Beautifully cheesy; I love the great cheesy bit about pulling the slice away from the rest and having cheese strings pulling from one another. I love cheese strings! Then there's the pesto and tomato paste base. The little ciliegene (cherry) sized fresh mozzarella, and the fresh grape tomatoes, and more pesto sprinkled over the top. And finally? The fresh grated Parmesano-Reggiano, sprinkled liberally over all. The aroma of it cooking had me planted in the kitchen, putting things away and constantly peaking in the oven window, breathing deeply.
Here's a wild thought: you know, instead of reviving people that have fainted with smelling salts-(nasty!), I think they'd be more receptive and apt to "snap to" faster if we let them inhale some whiffs from my pizza! I know I would!
I have several little tricks to help you succeed with your pizza the first time you try it. The best trick of all is that the dough is par-baked. This ensures that the middle is cooked, and that the pizza has risen completely across. A pizza peel (a large flat wooden or metal paddle shaped devise that helps you get the pizza out of the oven in one whole piece!) is instrumental in transferring the pizza in and out of the oven to complete several stages. I've seen these in most of the major kitchen gadget stores, i.e.: Target, Walmart, Sur la Table, William Sonoma, The Home Store, and you can google it and buy one online.
I have since enjoyed a second piece and it was everything as good as the first!
Risen, uncooked pizza round.So, let's go!
Special Equipment Needed: **place oven rack on the next to lowest rung in the oven.
-a pizza stone - place the stone in a hot oven - 450ºF for one hour prior to baking your pizza - essential for a firm browned crust.
-two baking sheets - these will be doubled up which enables the bottom of the crust to brown and bake without burning
-1 sheet of parchment paper lightly sprayed with non-stick cooking spray
Non-stick cooking spray
2-3 Tablespoons cornmeal - to spread over the stone or baking pans, the pizza rests directly on the cornmeal. This gives it a bit of room for the air to flow under the dough, providing better efficient usage of cooking time and heating/browning more efficiently.
Thick Crust Thin Crust
white rice flour 8 ounces 6 ounces
tapioca flour 4 ounces 2 ounces
xanthan gum 1 teaspoon 1/2 teaspoon
unflavored gelatin 1/2 teaspoon 1/4 teaspoon
egg replacer 1 teaspoon 1/2 teaspoon
sugar 1/4 cup 1/8 cup
psyllium husk powder* 2 1/2 Tablespoons 1 1/2 Tablespoon *essential for that wonderful "wheat bread" chew, the dough simply won't be the same without it
dry milk powder 1/4 cup 1/8 cup
*Kosher salt 1 teaspoon 1/2 teaspoon *if using table salt cut amounts in half
dry yeast granules 2 1/2 teaspoons 2 1/2 teaspoons = 1 envelope rapid rise or pizza style yeast
Italian seasonings 2 teaspoons 1 teaspoon
◆ extra flour blend to dust your hands with for forming the dough into the pizza round - about 1 Tablespoon
egg whites 2 large 1 large
dry egg replacer = 1 1/2 teaspoons Energy Egg Replacer plus 2 Tablespoons warm water equals 1 large egg
olive or vegetable oil 2 Tablespoons 1 1/2 Tablespoons
vinegar 1 teaspoon 1/2 teaspoon
warm water 110º *1 cup (+ ) *3/4 (+ ) *add the extra in step #2 only if needed
◆ extra oil to brush the dough edge before baking - about 1 Tablespoon
Mutti (The World Market) tomato paste is a product I keep on hand, it's very transportable being in a tube and what could be easier that squirting the tomato paste, rather than having to stop and open a can! Se sure to refrigerate both products after opening.
Galbani (Sprouts, Trader Joe's has their own brand which is excellent)
These are the topping I chose:
3 Tablespoons - eyeballed as squirts from the tube of tomato paste
3 Tablespoons of pesto sauce to spread and 1-2 tablespoons to drizzle over the top of the tomatoes and cheese
8 ounces fresh Mozzarella, any size type will do, just cut them into bite sized pieces to distribute evenly and easier
1/2 to 1 cup grated or shredded Parmesan cheese with or without other cheese pairings added
1/2 -1 pint cherry/grape tomatoes, halved
Crust Directions: You will pre-bake the crust for 15-20 minutes in step 5.
1. Blend the dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
2. Combine the wet ingredients, in the bowl of your stand mixer. Turn the speed to the lowest setting and spoon in the flour mixer about 1/3 at a time. Add more water if needed to get a firm dough. You don't wan't the dough to be flaky or dry, nor sopping wet. Beat on medium-high speed for 6 minutes. This helps to give it some elasticity which acts similar to gluten, and allows the flour granules to hydrate leaving you with a smooth mouth feel instead of grainy or gritty. Plop the dough onto the sprayed sheet of parchment paper, give it a few "kneads" and form into a rough round. Spray one piece of plastic wrap and place it sprayed side down onto the dough. Place the dough somewhere warm and let it sit and rise about 30-40 minutes. I doesn't really need to double, just increase some as it will puff out in the oven.
3. Once the dough has risen sufficiently, place the parchment paper holding the dough directly onto the pizza peel, remove the plastic wrap. Dip your fingers into the flour blend and start pushing on the dough to form a circle about 12 inches or bigger in diameter. While forming be sure to press the dough leaving about 1 inch around the outside edge thicker. This helps form a "stop" so your sauce(s) don't run off. And it looks good too, and gives your creation a professional touch!
4. a.-Pizza stone baking - Open the oven, pick up the pizza peel and gently slide the parchment paper with the pizza round onto the stone,
b. -Baking sheet baking - Place the two pans directly one on top of the other, (nestled), then grasp the parchment paper and slide it with the dough onto the double baking pans, place into the oven.
5. Pre-bake the dough round for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven, turn oven down to 325ºF .
Let the dough cool down about 10 minutes, then you can start adding your toppings. I've included the types and amounts that I used, but you are welcome and encouraged to make it your own by adding what you and your family like.
Building your pizza and baking it:
◆ spread the tomato sauce over the pizza round inside of the edge area, then spread the pesto ◆ over the top of the tomato paste,
◆ place the cherry tomato halves around making sure every bite will have some,
◆ place the mozzarella bites around and again making sure every bite will have some warm gooey cheese,
◆ drizzle some pesto sauce over the tomatoes and cheese
◆ top everything with parmesan cheese
6. Bake the pizza at 350º for 30-40 minutes, or until the crust edge is golden brown and toppings are hot and bubbly. Remove from the oven and let the pizza sit about 10 minutes; if you can. Then cut and eat.
Let the pizza stone rest in the oven for about an hour to cool down. Wipe with warm water, never soap because the stone will absorb the soap and taint everything else you ever bake.
**Energy Egg Replacer DOES NOT have the nutritional value of egg products nor are there any egg products or derivatives in Energy Egg Replacer. And I was not paid to provide you with this information.
I am not paid to promote any products edible or otherwise on this website. I merely provide you with the information as to the products I personally used so you will experience the same results I did. ; }