The base in this goats cheese pizza recipe is made from cauliflower, the florets get blitzed to form cauliflower crumbs that then get bound up with some goats’ cheese and an egg. When you spread it out and bake it, you end up with a fabulous golden brown base that is veggie, gluten-free and very good for you.
– 1 head of cauliflower
– Approx. 200g soft goats’ cheese
– 1 egg
– 1 tsp dried thyme
– 1 tbsp olive oil
– 1 onion, diced
– 1 red pepper, cored and roughly chopped
– 4 garlic cloves, crushed
– 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
– 2 bay leaves
– 1–2 tsp dried oregano
– Pinch of smoked sweet paprika or cayenne pepper
– Pinch of chilli flakes
– Salt and pepper
– 1 courgette
– 1 tsp olive oil
– Salt and pepper
– Approx. 100g of your favourite goats’ cheese
1. To make the base, remove the green stalks from the cauliflower (these are good when you’re roasting cauliflower, but they don’t work here) and cut or break the florets into small pieces. Pulse in a food processor until you make white ‘breadcrumbs’ that look a little damp. Don’t over process, but do make sure it’s fully ground up.
2. Transfer the cauliflower crumbs to a large bowl and mix with the goats’ cheese, egg and thyme. It’s almost like beating sugar and butter together with no electric beater. I just did it with a spatula and it’s easier if the cheese is soft and at room temperature. Eventually you will feel that everything is reasonably well distributed.
3. Line a baking tray or brownie tin with plenty of non- stick baking paper, then spread the ‘dough’ onto the paper and pat it down with the spatula. Put another sheet of baking paper over it and smooth out the cauliflower with your flat hands so that it spreads out until it’s about 1.25cm thick. It’s almost like pushing play dough into the corners. You can chill the base (even overnight) while the sauce is cooking away.
4. When you’re ready, preheat the oven to 200°C and cook the base on its own for about 20 minutes. It will start to look a little pale but golden on top. Lift up the paper to check that the bottom is okay. The edges may char a bit, but this is fine. Set aside to cool down.
5. Heat the olive oil and sweat the onion, red pepper and garlic for a few minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer over a gentle heat for about 20 minutes.
6. Remove the bay leaf and let the sauce cool down, then blitz until smooth in a blender. This will make too much sauce, but it can be frozen in batches so you have some ready to go the next time you want a homemade pizza sauce that’s a bit fruitier than normal.
7. Cut the courgette lengthways on a mandolin or very finely with a knife. Toss with the olive oil and salt and pepper. When you’re ready to do the final 10 minutes of cooking, spread a few tablespoons of sauce onto the pizza base, then top with slivers of the courgettes and scatter some goats’ cheese on top. Bake for 10 minutes, until the cheese is just starting to melt. Allow to cool and settle and serve. This dish is just as good cold, if not better.
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