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Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Simple, vegan, and healthy, this pizza crust won't leave you feeling too guilty about overindulging on pizza.

Servings: 4
Prep: 15 minutes
Total: 1 hour

Ingredients

for the dough:
1 head cauliflower
1/2 cup almond meal
1/2 cup gluten free all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons minced rosemary
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

for the pesto:
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts, plus more to garnish
1/2 cup toasted sunflower seeds, plus more to garnish
1 bunch fresh basil
1 lemon, juiced
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

for the toppings:
2 small delicata squash
10 ounces maitake mushrooms
freshly chopped parsley, for serving

Directions

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Start with cleaning a head of cauliflower. Toss the florets into a blender and pulse to create a rice.

2. Bring a pot of generously salted water to a boil and cook the cauliflower until al dente, about 2 to 3 minutes. Line a strainer with a cheesecloth and pour the cauliflower into the strainer. Rinse with cold water, then press out all of the water. Spin the cheesecloth and hold tight just above the cauliflower. Ring out well–this is important for a good crust.

3. In a large bowl, combine the cauliflower with the almond meal, flour, olive oil, salt, rosemary, baking soda, and pepper mixing well with your hands to combine

4. Spread the dough onto a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper. Form the crust with your fingers, shaping the dough into whatever shape suits you. Then toss it in the oven and bake it for about 20 minutes, taking care to watch the crust that it doesn't burn.

5. Make the pesto: Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until lightly toasted, about 5 to 7 minutes. Cool, then add to a blender or food processor along with the remaining oil, pine nuts, sunflower seeds, basil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper.

6. Meanwhile, toss the squash with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and salt. Spread into an even layer on a baking sheet and cook until golden and crispy, about 20 minutes.

7. Toss the maitake mushrooms with the remaining olive oil and salt and spread into an even layer on a baking sheet. Cook until golden and crispy, about 20 minutes.

8. To assemble the pizzas, spread some pesto onto each. Top with the squash and mushrooms, as well as some pine nuts and sunflower seeds. Sprinkle with parsley before serving.

From How-To: Make Cauliflower Crust Pizza