I’ve been in a bit of a funk lately—lately meaning the past few months. When we first moved to LA’s South Bay from Boston, I hopped right into a job search that seemed to take forever and when I finally secured a position I thought was the right fit, it turned out to be all wrong. When I quit as graciously and honestly as possible, I drove home feeling free but lost and more unsure than ever of what I wanted to do here. After several more interviews with people almost half my age offering about half the salary I was making in Boston, (and two job offers that offered no pay, but experience and exposure!) I was exhausted from my headfirst and singular mission of chasing something that literally wasn’t going to pay off.
Not working feels like wearing clothing that’s the completely wrong size and probably always will, but for now, I have decided to fill my days differently. I recently joined Harmony Yoga in Redondo Beach and love it. I’m definitely a bit stiff and sore from not practicing regularly, but it feels good to be surrounded by other students during the day and following a set schedule has improved my mindset and outlook. And immersing myself in course tasks at Rouxbe is giving me the creative outlet, challenge and structure that’s perfect for escaping into here and there during the week as I continue my job search with a more balanced intention.
Since I’ve become more physically active with yoga and more mentally challenged with Rouxbe, new ideas have begun to pop into my head more frequently to translate into content for this space. And although the idea of making a cauliflower crust pizza certainly isn’t mine, it was fun to come up with my own version of it this weekend. This purplish crust is crispy and chewy around the edges and firm but soft towards the center. It looks beautiful once baked and is sturdy enough to pile on with whatever vegetables you like.
PURPLE CAULIFLOWER CRUST PIZZA WITH GARLIC OIL
Yield 2 servings
for the crust
- 3-4 cups chopped cauliflower florets, any color or variety (enough to yield about 2 cups grated)
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup panko crumbs
- 2 TB Ener-G
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 TB olive oil
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp salt
- a few pinches of pepper
for the garlic oil
- 4-6 large cloves garlic, halved and smashed with the flat end of a knife
- 1/4 cup olive oil
for the topping (this is what I used, but whatever toppings you want will work)
- shiitake mushrooms, sliced and sauteed until soft
- red onion, sliced into rings and sauteed until soft
- cherry tomatoes, halved
- yellow bell pepper, chopped
- katamala olives, chopped
- leftover golden garlic from making the garlic oil
To make the crust
- Place the cauliflower florets and water into a blender and chop until finely crumbled. Transfer the cauliflower to a tea towel and gather up the edges, twist and squeeze to get rid of all the water. You’ll want the cauliflower to be very dry. Transfer to a large bowl and add in the panko crumbs. Stir to combine.
- In a separate smaller bowl, whisk together the Ener-G, water and olive oil until creamy. Drizzle into the cauliflower and panko mixture. Stir to combine. Add in the spices and stir again. Cover and place into the refrigerator to chill for about an hour.
To make the garlic oil
- Place the olive oil into a small saucepan over low heat. Add in the smashed garlic and allow to develop a golden color, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
When you are ready to bake the crust
- Place a silpat onto a baking sheet and preheat your oven to 350. Gather the cauliflower mixture into a ball, then press it into any shape you want. It should be no more than 1/2-inch thick. Brush with some of the garlic oil (you don’t need to use all of it), then bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the edges are slightly crispy, but not burned. Let it rest on the silpat for about 10 minutes before removing it with a large spatula.
- Saute whatever vegetables you want in some of the leftover garlic oil and top as desired. No need to place back in the oven to bake again.