Normally, most Fridays during lent, we eat cheese pizza with all of the fixin's (on the other Fridays, we eat these yummy pepper and egg sandwiches/unwiches), but this lent I haven't made pizza because I don't have a good recipe for a gluten-free pizza crust (do I go almond flour or sorghum flour or xanthan gum or arrowroot starch?) Oh the decisions are really endless.
But haunted by my own desire for a crispy cheese pizza and throwing all caution to the wind (and since I'm the one with the gluten issues), I bought a package of Bob's Red Mill gluten-free pizza crust mix. For some reason I had my doubts, thinking it was going to be thick and spongy and not at all like the glutenfied pizza crusts I've come to love, but I was wrong. Dead wrong. It was fabulous.
We like our pizzas with a thin, crispy crust, a sweet pizza sauce and all of the veggies blanketed with various cheeses. Normally, I'll put onions and black olives and green peppers beneath a light layer of parmigiano-reggiano and a thick layer of mozzarella, but this time I had onions and sweet orange peppers with pecorino romano and mozzarella.
I paired it with a sweet organic sauce from our local market and it was absolutely delicious. This is so simple, you could practically do it blind-folded (or with one eye on the nightly news like I did):
Gina C's Sweet Pepper and Savory Onion Pizza
Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free Pizza Crust (or pizza crust of your choice)
1 onion, half-mooned and sliced thinly
1 sweet orange pepper, julienned
Pizza sauce of choice
1/4 cup pecorino romano cheese
1 1/2 - 2 cups mozzarella cheese
Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Start pizza crust by proofing yeast in a large bowl with yeast and water according to the directions.
Add the eggs and oil and blend briefly. Add the flour mix and blend on medium until combined. Split dough in half in bowl.
Cover with plastic wrap, set aside and let rise for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, prep your veggies. Turn over a pizza pan and cut a piece of parchment paper to fit comfortably over it. Spray it with cooking spray. (I like to bake my pizzas with homemade dough on the back of pizza pans; it gives it a nice sturdy surface and makes it easier to get the pizza on and off of the pan.)
After the dough has risen, take out one half with very wet hands and press it into a circle on the parchment paper.
Place in the oven and bake 7 - 9 minutes. Remove from the oven and spread sauce over crust, add veggies and cheese. If you want a less "rustic" look, trim the edges.
Place into the oven for 15 - 18 minutes more.
While that cooks, do whatever you want! I made a salad to go along with the pizza with a really tasty dressing: Mix about 1/4 cup olive oil with a tablespoon of dijon mustard and a hefty pinch (or two) of salt and whisk until combined.
I let our pizza get nice and crusty around the edges and it was really so good. After I took a bite of it, I actually went back to look at the package to make sure it was gluten-free.
I think I'll freeze the other half of dough for the next pizza. So really when you're thinking about how much this costs versus making your own mix, you can get two pizzas out of one package, which on Amazon is about $2.91 per package ($1.46 per pizza), plus free shipping, so it's really a great deal!
What's also great is that this is a dairy-free crust, so if need be, we can find a substitute for the cheese when the baby is old enough to chew!
Try it out; you will be pleasantly surprised!