Today’s the day.
The day I’ve been waiting to release my cookbook to all of you. It feels like my birthday! And as you know, today my cookbook is in stores nationwide!
So, for a little celebration, why don’t we have a pizza party together? Are you ready for another sneak peak recipe from my cookbook, Eating Clean?
I thought so…
This Blissful Quinoa Pizza Crust is going to be the star of your next pizza party. Get ready for some outrageous flavor and a whole lotta protein and fiber. Plus, when you top it with my homemade tomato sauce, fresh basil, shallots, ribboned carrots and my homemade dairy-free cashew cheese– you’re going to be in heaven.
I got the idea for this recipe in one of my cooking classes three years ago when one of my student’s told me to play around with using gluten-free grains for the ‘crust’ of a pizza. What a genius idea, right? After some serious trial and error (thank you to my best buddy, Maria for your help with testing out this recipe 10 times to help me perfect it). If you purchased my cookbook, Eating Clean: The 21-Day Plan to Detox, Fight Inflammation, and Reset Your Body, you’ll see there are a TON of fun, flavorful pizza crust recipes inside and a few flatbreads made from a handful of anti-inflammatory fabulous ingredients. Check out my Antioxidant Wild Rice Flatbread with Glorious Chickpea Garlic Sauce (page 227 in my cookbook) for a creative new way to use wild rice instead of flours. You’ll be pleasantly surprised and you’ll want to make it over and over again.
Quinoa is a bit of a miracle seed (yes, it’s a seed, although it’s often referred to as a grain). Besides earning our affection for its remarkable protein content, quinoa can hold together well enough to create a delicious pizza crust. This recipe does require soaking the quinoa overnight- that is a must! The recipe will not work if you do not soak the quinoa. Trust me. I tried to do that about 4 times and it flopped. So, save your quinoa and soak it overnight in a large bowl for this crust. I assure you it’s worth it. Just toss the quinoa in a bowl of water before you go to bed, then you can use the drained quinoa the next day when you get home from work for a quick dinner to pop in the oven.
This recipe makes a fairly simple pizza; add one of my pesto recipes (from my cookbook) on top if you’d like more complex flavors. I topped this recipe with my Heirloom Tomato Sauce (in my cookbook) and my Dairy-Free Creamy Cashew Cheese (in my cookbook), which are two recipes that you do not want to miss in my Dip It, Spread It, Dress It chapter. They’re both super simple, easy and incredibly versatile. I put this tomato sauce on everything from my roasted veggies to my pizzas and crackers…then I add a dollop of my Dairy-Free Creamy Cashew Cheese on top and have a mini party by myself in my kitchen. Ahhhh life in Manhattan doesn’t get much better than this folks. When you’ve got your health, a healthy whole grain (and gluten-free) pizza and a lot of happiness- you’ve got everything you’ll ever need in life.
Dig in, have fun and I hope you fall in L-O-V-E with my cookbook. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for making my dreams come true. I hope my book inspires you to eat clean, live clean and feel amazing- because you deserve it.
p.s. Costco, Sam’s Club, Barnes & Noble and Whole Foods Market are all carrying my book so hopefully you can find it in one of these stores near you or online at Amazon.com.
Have a beautiful week and enjoy!
Try to buy everything organic. Here’s why I eat organic: The Benefits of Eating Organic.
Text excerpted from Eating Clean, © 2016 by Amie Valpone. Reproduced by permission of HoughtonMifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.
- 1 cup quinoa soaked overnight, drained, and rinsed (see note)
- 1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt plus more as needed
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more as needed
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus more for drizzling
- 1/4 cup Heirloom Tomato Sauce page 318
- 2 large carrots peeled and cut into thin ribbons with a vegetable peeler
- 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh basil
- 1 shallot thinly sliced
- 1 cup Dairy-Free Creamy Cashew Cheese page 308
Make the crust: Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Place the quinoa in a food processor with the broth, chili powder, salt, and pepper and process until smooth.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet in the oven for 5 minutes. Add the oil and swirl to coat the skillet, then heat for another 5 minutes. Add the quinoa mixture to the skillet and press it evenly into the bottom of the pan. Bake until set, about 15 minutes. Using a spatula, flip the crust over and bake until golden brown, another 12 to 15 minutes.
Spread the Heirloom Tomato Sauce on top of the crust and cover with the carrots, basil, and shallot. Bake for an additional 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and top with the Dairy-Free Creamy Cashew Cheese, a drizzle of oil, and, if desired, a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Serve warm.