Kurzweil's Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Friday, January 28, 2011

I can have pizza on medifast? No way! What type of diet is this? Well, yes you can! I didn't believe it at first until I saw the infamous cauliflower pizza crust recipe. I was really intimidated with making this because I thought it would be way too hard to make. I don't even make regular pizza crust from scratch, nonetheless one made out of cauliflower. So for months, I have been seeing many people say they have made this crust and it tasted really good. So then I thought hmmmm, I gotta give this a try! I researched all different kinds of recipes searching for the one that looked the most appealing to me. I found one made by medifast member, Kurzweil. You can search for her tutorial by going to http://www.mymedifast.com/, next go to "community", then "discussion boards", then" search forums", and finally typing her member name. She has a cauliflower pizza crust tutorial on the medifast forums that is a blessing in disguise. She makes it look so easy with her step by step instructions and not to mention it is entertaining to read with her cute sense of humor. It was so helpful that I finally decided to give it a try. After a few trial and errors, I finally got it down!

I found another cauliflower pizza crust recipe that I want to try that uses basically the same ingredients, except instead of 1 oz of ricotta and 1 oz mozzarella cheese, it uses a 1/2 cup of 2% mozzarella cheese. I will give that a try tomorrow! Be on the look out!


(THE GOOD)

I topped this pizza with sliced grape tomatoes and green peppers.

Before beginning this recipe, I highly recommend getting a food processor. You can hand grate the cauliflower, but you might regret it. I got this bad boy online from Wal-mart for only $31! On the site it says it is a Hamilton Beach 6-Cup Bowl Food Processor, but when I had it delivered site to store, it was 8 cups. It had the same item number, but I am not sure what happened there since they don't even sell that brand in an 8-Cup. Anyways, it is a great investment not only for Medifast, but just in general. Trust me, it will make your life easier when trying to grate cauliflower for the pizza crusts or cauliflower "rice". I love this food processor and it does a wonderful job with slicing and chopping as well. It will save you tons of time and frustration. For the price, you just can't beat it!


The second little gadget you might want to think about getting, if you don't already have one, is a digital food scale. It takes the guess work out of measuring and it is just so much easier. Plain and simple. This particular one measures in grams and ounces. I got this at Wal-mart as well. Can you tell I like Wal-mart? Nah, of course not. This only cost me $18!




1 oz of mozzarella cheese. Now that was easy, wasn't it?


Combine 1 cup of grated cauliflower, 1/4 cup egg beaters, 1 oz 2% mozzarella cheese, and 1 oz low fat ricotta cheese. I added a little bit of garlic salt and McCormick Italian Blend seasoning as well. Stir until well mixed. Remember to subtract the seasonings from your condiments.


Pour mixture onto a parchment lined cookie sheet sprayed with non stick cooking spray. Make sure you use parchment paper and not waxed paper!!!! Otherwise, you will not get the same results! Spread thinly with the back of a spoon forming a circle about the size of a dinner plate not including the rim.


It is ready to be baked!


I usually do two crusts at a time. The oven is preheated to 425 degrees. Some ovens get hotter quicker so you may have to reduce the temperature to 400 degrees. Use your own judgement. I baked it for 25 minutes, but Kurzweil's recipe states to bake at least 40 minutes on one side. I tried it that way in the beginning, but my pizza crust began to burn. That is what I get for letting it sit there too long without watching it. It is probably extra crispy though LOL. See my burnt pizza below.


(THE BAD)


(THE UGLY)

As Kurzweil stated in her tutorial,  I did cry.


This is a flipped crust. Ready to be put back in the oven for another 15 minutes.


Finally! This is a crust I am extremely happy with. It looks slightly burnt on the edges, but it is not. That is just the way I like it. It wasn't completely crispy, but it was close enough. I was afraid if I cooked it any longer, it would get too burned. I can definitely hold the pizza in my hand and it wasn't mushy at all.


Then I take a 1/2 cup of diced tomatoes from the can. It could be Italian or Rotel but it is important to check the carbs. You need to have less than 5 g of carbs per 1/2 cup. Some will have 6 or 7 grams of carbs!



I pulse mine for a few seconds in a small chopper but if you would like a chunky sauce then you can spread it on the already baked crust just how it is.


Mmmmm doesn't that sauce look scrumptious! No need to add any additional condiments to the sauce since there is already Italian seasonings in the sauce!


Sprinkle 1.5 oz or a little less than 1/2 a cup of whatever cheese you like. You know have a complete lean and green meal!


You don't have to have an Italian style pizza. This one is made with a 1/2 cup of Rotel with green chilies and then topped with Mexican cheese and jalapenos from a jar! The jalapenos I have were only 1 gram of carbs per 1/4 cup which allowed me to have 4 tbsp as a condiment! Hmmmm don't think I could handle that many jalapenos LOL. I will stick with just a few slices.


Now what to do with the extra pizza crusts? I individually wrap the crusts with the cheese, tomato sauce and toppings already on them individually in foil tightly and place them in a gallon size freezer bag. I can usually get 2 to 3 in one bag. When I am ready to have a nice piping hot pizza, I put the frozen pizza crust in a preheated 425 degree oven on a lightly sprayed parchment paper for about 15 minutes or until cheese is melted. Again, watch your oven times!

This is Kurweil's Cauliflower Pizza Crust recipe.

Cauliflower Pizza Crust
Excerpts from Kurweil's Cauliflower Pizza Crust Tutorial

Ingredients:

Crust:
1 cup shredded cauliflower (2 Greens)
1 oz low fat ricotta with 2 - 3 g of fat/oz (1/8 Lean)
1 oz light mozzarella with 3 - 6 g of fat/oz (2/8 Lean)
1/4 cup Egg Beaters (1/8 Lean)
1/8 tsp garlic powder (1/2 Condiment)
1/4 tsp dried basil (1/4 Condiment)

Toppings:
2 oz light three cheese blend 3 - 6 g of fat/oz (1/2 lean)
1/2 cup Italian or Rotel diced tomatoes - less than 5 g of carbs per 1/2 cup (1 Green)

Directions:
 Puree diced tomatoes if desired in a small chopper for a few seconds. Set aside.
 Weigh/measure cauliflower (1 cup of raw cauliflower = 100 grams), then wash it. Next, add the 1/4 cup egg beaters. Then add 1 oz light ricotta. Next, add the 1 oz light mozzarella. Stir together well.
You can add any condiments/seasonings you want at this point and stir them in. I like garlic powder. Other people recommend oregano, etc. You can also choose to add those to your sauce instead.

Line a pan with parchment paper sprayed lightly with cooking spray. The weight of one crust (uncooked) is right around 228 - 229 grams using the ingredients I used if you are making a large batch and need to portion them. Use the back of your spoon to spread them out. They really won't spread much during cooking (they'll actually shrink a bit), so you can get the crusts close together. The thinner, the crispier.

You will need to toy with your oven/times to get them how you like them. I bake for 40 minutes straight at just below 425 without even looking at them, first. (I baked for only 30 minutes). Then take them out and flip them. When flipping them, make sure you get the spatula under all parts first, it can stick in areas and break/fold your crust, then you'll cry. Put back in the oven  and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes (I baked for another 10 minutes).

Add tomato sauce and cheese on top. Broil until cheese is melted about 5 to 10 minutes.

Cool completely and toss them in a gallon Ziploc bag in the freezer. They freeze and reheat VERY well. I used to put waxed paper in between them so they wouldn't stick, but I didn't do it last time, and guess what? As long as you cool the crusts before freezing, they won't stick anyway. Waste of waxed paper and a hassle (again, the lazy). (I add my tomato sauce, cheese and toppings to the crust and then freeze but you can do it this way as well. I wrap each pizza individually in foil and then put 2 or 3 pizzas in one gallon sized Ziploc bag. Then I bake for 15 minutes at 425 degrees.)

*To reheat and finalize cooking, pop a frozen one back in the oven at 425 on parchment for 10 - 12 minutes. Then add my tomato puree, cheese, and toppings and cook it for another 5 minutes to get the sauce and cheese hot and melted.

*Note You can also use Walden Farms Marinara Sauce, but 1/4 cup is considered to be 2 condiments and is not a vegetable. You would have to add a third of veggies to your meal if you choose this option. You could use the veggies as your toppings!


1 Complete Lean and Green Meal with 3/4 Condiment (Not even 1 Condiment!) No Healthy Fat Required


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