(MEATLESS MONDAYS/VEGAN RECIPES) For this week’s Meat-Free Monday, why not try a delicious spring recipe that makes the most of this season’s freshest ingredients? This yummy green pizza with a cauliflower base does just that!

The unconventional grain-free pizza base is made with cauliflower, which–believe it or not–is actually much easier than making a traditional pizza crust since it doesn’t require any kneading or time for the dough to rise. The cauliflower is blended into a rice-like consistency, giving it a softer texture than traditional pizza, but it still holds together very well and has a nice, slightly sweet flavor.

Add traditional tomato sauce, spinach, and thinly shaved zucchini before baking, then add even more green leaves with drizzled herb and lemon sauce post-baking, and voila! Happy eating! — Global Animal

Green Pizza with a Cauliflower Base. Photo Credit: Green Kitchen Stories

Green Pizza with a Cauliflower Base

Ingredients:

Pizza base

  • florets from 1 cauliflower
  • 80 g / 3 oz / 3/4 cup ground almonds (almond flour)
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 organic eggs, beaten (or see tip for a vegan alternative)

Topping

  • 1 zucchini, shaved with a potato peeler
  • 2 handfuls fresh spinach or leafy greens of your choice
  • pecorino cheese, shaved with a potato peeler

Tomato sauce

  • 2 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil, coconut oil or ghee
  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dried chili
  • 3 x 400 g (14 oz) cans whole plum tomatoes
  • 5 sprigs of basil, leaves picked
  • sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Basil & lemon sauce

  • 2 cups tightly packed basil + extra for topping
  • 1/2 cup cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1/2 lemon, juice
  • 2 tbsp shredded pecorino cheese* (optional)
  • 1 pinch of sea salt

Directions:

For the base

Preheat the oven to 200°C / 400°F and line a baking tray with baking paper. Coarsely chop the cauliflower, place in food processor and blend until it is a fine rice-like texture. Measure 600 ml (3 cups / 20 fl oz) of the cauliflower ‘rice’ and place in a mixing bowl. Add the ground almonds, oregano and seasoning and mix with your hands. Make a well in the centre and add the eggs. Use your hands to pull the dry ingredients towards the middle until everything is combined and you can shape it into a ball. It should be more loose and sticky than a traditional pizza dough. Transfer to the baking paper and form into a pizza base by flattening the dough with your hands. Make the edges slightly higher. Pre-bake for 25 minutes or until golden. Meanwhile, prepare the pizza topping. Remove the crust from the oven. Cover it with tomato sauce, shaved zucchini and spinach and put it back in the oven for 5-10 more minutes. Take it out the oven and top with Basil & Lemon sauce, (shaved pecorino), fresh herbs and green leaves. Serve.

Tip: For a vegan alternative, replace the eggs with this chia mixture: Measure 30 g / 1/4 cup /1 oz of chia seeds into a bowl and add 175 ml / 3/4 cup / 6 fl oz of water. Stir well and place in the fridge for 15 minutes before use.

For the tomato sauce

Heat oil in a saucepan on medium heat. Add onion, garlic and chili and sauté for a couple of minutes until golden. Stir in the tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper. Use a wooden spoon to crush the tomatoes. Lower the heat, cover and gently simmer for about 20 minutes. Use immediately or cool and store in an air-tight glass jar in the fridge. Keeps for about a week.

For the basil & lemon sauce

Place all ingredients in a mixer and blend until smooth. Use immediately or store in an air-tight glass jar in the fridge. Keeps for about a week.

Recipe Courtesy of Green Kitchen Stores

More Green Kitchen Stories: http://www.greenkitchenstories.com/green-pizza-with-a-cauliflower-base/

Learn more about the Meat-Free Mondays Challenge!

See more Meat-Free Monday recipes, here!

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