His & Hers Pizzas

    Don and I both love pizza.  He has always been the pizza chef in this household.  For many years I would just scrape off and eat the toppings and sauce while leaving the crust.  And sometimes I succumbed to temptation and ate the crust; even after peeling it off.  Much education later I finally realized how destructive gluten was to my system.  It wasn’t just a couple of days of discomfort; there was lasting damage from small exposures.

    We tried to find a gluten-free pizza crust that both of us could/would eat.  That was Pizza Crust I.  Somehow I could not justify a double pizza crust that required a half dozen eggs.  We moved on to equal but separate pizzas.  He makes a crust, I make a crust.  Then he adds toppings, bakes the pizzas, and dinner is served.

    My gluten-free pizza crust is now on version V.  Eggs were eliminated and replaced by chia seed.  Yeast was eliminated and replaced by baking powder.  In this version all vestiges of the grass family (of the genus Poaceae) were eliminated and that includes any form of cane sugar – sugar cane is after all, a grass plant.  The small amount of sugar was replaced by agave syrup.  It helps with browning as well as flavor; sugar is not solely to make the yeast happy.  I have included several columns of my ‘pizza crust spreadsheet’ to illustrate the gradual recipe changes.  The changes made in each version are bolded.

Pizza Crust V – Gluten-free, Casein Free, Egg-free, Poaceae-free
Pizza Crust V - Gluten-free, Casein Free, Egg-free, Poaceae-free

Measure out the dry ingredients and whisk together until thoroughly blended.  Make a well in the flour for adding the wet ingredients.  Stir the water, olive oil and agave syrup into the flour mixture and work it with a spoon until all of the flour is absorbed.  It should form a sticky ball of dough that begins to hold together.

Dump the dough on a bread board or clean counter top and knead it with your hands for about a minute.  Spray or oil a 12” pizza pan.  Flatten the dough and place it on the pan.  Press all around until the crust is as even as possible.  Form a raised rim around the edge of the crust to help contain the toppings.  This step is so much like working with clay in art class.  If there are cracks just pinch it back together and try again.  Gluten free dough will not toughen up from handling it.   Sometimes a it helps to oil a spoon and use the back to push the dough around and form an edge to contain the toppings.

Bake the crust for 6-7 minutes at 425* F.  Remove it from the oven.  Add sauce, grilled onions, mushrooms, olives and optional other ingredients.  Cheese may be added if dairy is not a problem.  Bake an additional 10-15 minutes until the edges are brown and the toppings are hot.  A crust made with buckwheat flour is significantly darker than other versions.  It may looked burnt in the picture but it is really just perfect with a firm base and a crispy edge.

His & Hers Pizzas

His & Hers Pizzas

When Don puts the pizzas together there is ground turkey and cheese in the toppings.  I am working on one with a pesto base and lots of sautéed veggies for toppings.  Summer produce is looking good for that kind of experimenting.



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