Fratelli Perata Winery

Fratelli Perata presents Cauliflower Pizza Crust with Mushrooms

Take a healthy spin on a classic dish and add wine. You can’t lose. But, never did these Italians believe that the doughy crispy crust of a traditional pizza could be replaced with something like cauliflower. This recipe might turn any pizza snob into a believer. Not only have we entered the low-carb scene, but we entered a whole new realm of flavor. Topped with all the usual toppings or simply with garlic, mushrooms, and mozzarella this is the perfect pair to a glass of Merlot.

For the crust:
1 small to medium sized head of cauliflower--should yield about 2-3 cups once processed
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon each dried basil and oregano (crushed additionally between fingers)
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese or pecorino cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
1 egg

Suggested toppings to pair with Merlot:
2-4 cloves garlic (depending on how garlicky you like your foods; we used 4)
Button mushrooms sliced
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
2/3 cup mozzarella

Place a pizza stone, or a baking sheet, in the oven and preheat to 450 degrees F. On a cutting board, place a piece of parchment paper large enough for an 8-10 in crust and grease paper with spray cooking oil or olive oil.

Wash and thoroughly dry the cauliflower. Cut off the florets, do not worry about removing the entire stem, but try to stick with just the florets. Pulse florets in food processor until the cauliflower resembles a “couscous” texture and size. This should result in 2-3 cups.

Place the cauliflower in a microwave safe bowl and microwave covered on high for about 4 minutes. Place cooked cauliflower on a tea towel or sheet of cheese cloth and let cool. Once the cauliflower is cool enough to handle, wrap it in the towel or cheese cloth so all the cauliflower is in a ball in the middle. Squeeze out as much water as possible. It took us about 5 minutes of squeezing. The drier the cauliflower the chewier “crust” you will get. If the cauliflower is left too moist you will get a crumbly “crust.”

In a bowl, combine well the cauliflower, salt, basil, oregano, garlic powder, parmesan or pecorino, mozzarella, and egg. Once mixed, form the dough into a crust shape, about 8-10 inches in diameter, on the oiled parchment paper. Slide the parchment paper onto the pizza stone or baking sheet in the oven. Bake 8-12 minutes, until crust turns a golden brown. While crust is baking sauté mushrooms and garlic in olive oil until fragrant (3-5 minutes). Once crust is browned, remove from oven retaining parchment paper and transfer to cutting board.

While crust is out of oven, place garlic and mushrooms on top of crust being careful not to transfer too much olive oil onto crust. Cover with cheese and put back in the oven on the pizza stone or baking sheet for an additional 3-5 minutes until cheese is bubbly and browning. Allow to cool and enjoy. This is just unbelievably good. We feel so virtuous eating it and drinking a glass of Merlot.