Sunday, 16 November 2014

Low Carb & Gluten Free Pizza

Pizza is part of that universal food type- a flat piece of carbohyrate as a convenient delivery system for meat and/or vegetables. It's something I love, particularly on a Friday night when I'm starting to unwind and it's something that I don't want to have to go without. I've tried and disliked the cauliflower pizza base- this one is far closer to the 'real thing'.

As part of my neverending quest to treat low carb as a way of life, not a punishment, this recipe is a big deal to me!

2 Cups Grated Mozzarella
2 Tablespoons Cream Cheese
3/4 Cup Almond Flour/ Ground Almonds
Pinch Salt
1 Large Egg
Pinch Black Pepper
Garlic Powder

Your choice of toppings.

Preheat the oven to 180/350 degrees.

1. Put the grated mozzarella and cream cheese in a microwavable bowl and heat on high for 1 minute. Take it out and stir well, then pop it back in for another 30 seconds.
It should look something like this:

2. Once the cheese is done, mix in the almond flour, egg, salt, pepper and garlic powder as quickly as you can. Mix well until it binds like a dough.
You'll see differences in the colour of the dough where there the cheese & dry indredients aren't well combined. Aim to get it as even a colour all-over as you can.

Place the dough on a baking tray. I've found the best results are achieved with a silicone pat on the baking tray.

4. Use your fingertips to gently push out the dough into an even layer with no holes. The dough will be quite sticky, so wetting your fingers with cold water will help make it easier to spread.

5. Prick the dough allover with a fork to stop air bubbles forming. Bake at 180/ 350 degrees for 5 minutes. Then take it out and prick again with a fork. It'll look a little more solid:

7. Put it back in for 6 minutes and then it should come out looking something like this:

8.  Now, add your toppings! My go-to combination is passata, grated mozzarella and chedder mixed, pancetta and pepperoni from Iago.
If using a tomato sauce, spread it thinly so it doesn't make the base soggy. I usually use Bunalun organic passata as it is relatively lower in carb than other shop-bought sauces.

Note: I've found that you get a crispier base if you can transfer it from the solid baking tray to one with holes before adding your toppings. It's not the end of the world if you don't have one, but I'd recommend investing if you like your pizza crispy!

For something a little different, try adding chilli powder or mixed herbs to the dough. Add some creative toppings and your base can set the scene for some pretty interesting flavour combinations.

With the ingredients I use, each full pizza works out to about 10 carbs. However, I'm not your mama so if you're counting carbs for weight loss make sure to do your own calculations!

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