{pizza week part two} Living w/out Gluten & Cheese

Dough Ball, Dough Cutter and Cookie Sheet Turned Pizza Peel

Tired of Pizza Week Yet?

Well, I’m here to wrap it up with a dough that’s a little different and some cheese-free suggestions for those individuals and families that can’t have cheese on their pizza.

As we all know Miles is gluten-free along with a host of other foods due to severe life-threatening food allergies. One of those being dairy protein (proteins are all the same in all the common milks out there: cow, goat, sheep, ect). What do we do as a family on pizza night?

First let’s talk about the dough. Before we figured out that Miles had an allergy to gluten*I was faithful to everyday bread book Healthy Breads in Five Minutes a Day. If you do not have this book and would like to make bread products on a semi-regular basis, go buy this book. I love the technique of making a gigantic batch of no-knead dough, storing it in the refrigerator after it has risen, then tearing off a piece when you wanna make a loaf or a pizza or crackers or bread sticks. It’s a very accessible and quick/easy way to make fresh bread with limited time. Seriously, easy.

Once we went gluten-free for family meals (since the food allergy is life-threatening, Hubs & I keep a loaf of Rockhill Bakehouse farm bread around for our morning toast & sandwiches but for family meals we eat Miles’ diet) I had to conquer a new way of bread making. I will be completely honest, I don’t make many bread loaves any longer. I sold my bread machine when I started making bread (FAIL), pre-gf, and all the oven bread recipes I’ve tried kinda suck or are simply too much work & time & ingredients. I buy Miles sandwich bread in the store. That said, I am still rockin’ the crackers, bread sticks, crepes and pizza doughs homemade and still from the Healthy Breads in Five Minutes a Day book.

I have heavily adapted their recipe, to be egg, soy and corn free, which can be found on page 238: “Gluten-Free Olive Oil Bread”. The mixing/storing/cooking method has not changed from original:

makes 2 10″ pizzas

1/4 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup sweet rice flour
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. teff flour (I’m a huge fan of this slightly-nutty tasting, high in protein & iron flour)
1 3/4 cups tapioca starch (also known as tapioca flour)
1 Tb yeast
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 Tb guar gum powder (you can also use Xanthum Gum)
optional: a crank of black pepper, various 1/2 teaspoons of other dried herbs)

1 1/4 lukewarm water
2 flax eggs (For 1 egg: mix 1 tablespoon flaxmeal with 3 tablespoons hot water, stir and then let sit for 5 minutes and it will be a glob, like an egg)
1/3 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons white or apple cider vinegar

6 qt. food grade container (you can use a large mixing bowl from your stand mixer or cabinet)
Pizza Stone
Cookie Sheet with no sides as my pizza peel
dough cutter as my constant “lifter”- Until I put the pizza on the stone I continuously “lift” the pizza from the cookie cutter so it doesn’t stick (GF doughs are REALLY sticky)

1. Mix dry in a large bowl or food grade container (I use a food grade 6 qt container).
2. Mix wet ingredients in a bowl.
3. Gradually pour wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. I use my hand to mix everything together, but you can use a dough hook on your Kitchenaid or a food processor.
4. Cover with a tea towel or some plastic wrap with a rubber band (not airtight) and let rest for 2 hours or more. I actually make my dough at night, left it to rise overnight then throw it in the refrigerator until I use it or I bake my pizzas in the morning. This dough will keep in your refrigerator for up to two weeks.
5. When ready to use, preheat your oven or grill to 475 with stone in place. Then HEAVILY flour your surface, your hands, the kitchen counter, the ceiling (anyone who’s worked with gf doughs knows what I’ve talking about- sticky mess!). I use plain white rice flour for my dusting flour. If Miles wasn’t sensitive to corn, I would use corn flour or cornmeal here.
6. Tear off 1/2 of the dough and carefully roll to a 10″ round. You will need to re-flour your hands, the surface. Use you dough cutter as your aid to help you keep that pie from sticking to the cookie sheet (I keep it floured so when I shove it underneath the pie, it re-flours the underside)
7. Throw the pie on the stone and cook for about 5-7 minutes (it should be 75% cooked). I then take it out and load it with sauce & toppings (see below or all the other awesome “Pizza Week” posts). Then cook it another 5 minutes. Your oven or grill could run hotter or cooler. This recipe does cook up like a regular pizza dough, so if you’ve made pizza before you will recognize doneness.
8. Let Rest for a minutes or two then slice & serve.

Thin crust with a hint of teeny tiny air pockets
Garlic Powder, Olive Oil, Smoked Sea Salt & Cherry Tomotoes


The cheese issue: We can not use cheese or a cheese-like substance as Miles is not only dairy protein allergic but also sesame and pea protein which eliminates Diaya and other products like it, so we tend to have flavorful meats on our pizzas. Salty bacon or a seasoned sausage or leftover BBQ chicken. Like Erika, I tend to just use a combination of stuff that is left in my refrigerator.

Vegetables: Everything is free-game here from marinated fairytale eggplant to carmelized red onions to simple cherry tomatoes. I tend to go vegetable-heavy on all of our family meals, so on pizza I go a little more minimal and just pair one or two veggies with a meat.

Sauce: I don’t use a traditional sauce for our pizzas. I have a rotation of four “sauces”. First, I use a combo of tomato paste (1/2 a small jar or tube) and some pureed tomatoes with a dash of S&P with some dried herbs thrown in. Its cheaper, less salt and Miles has a VERY tomato-heavy diet, he loves the taste of paste straight, so why dilute it. Second version, I roast a head of garlic and then smear it on as the sauce. The third version is almost the same at the second, before I cook the pie I sprinkle tons of garlic powder (KFF makes the best powder!) and a bit more salt, like a smoked seal salt and throw on some fresh, in-season cherry tomatoes (seen in the pictures). When completely cooked, I finish with some olive oil. As my last version, I use guacamole and put on black beans, some tomato slices and some chorizo.

I haven’t tried a BBQ sauce pizza, due to personal taste but I should as I’m sure my boys would LOVE it…


*Miles tests positive skin & blood testing for an allergy, he does not carry the genetic market of Celiac’s. His allergy to gluten comes out in developmental issues, it is not a life threatening allergy. Miles starting eating gluten at 12 months and stopped gaining any weight at all (gained a 1/2 pound between 12-18 months June 2010) and had a slow decline backward of his motor, cognitive & physical development which lead to his entrance into NYS’ Early Intervention Program for speech and physical therapies. Once my pediatrician & I decided to cut gluten out of his diet, within 4 weeks he was finally walking and talking up a storm and gained 4 pounds. He was discharged from both of these therapies by December 2010.


6 Comments Add yours

  1. Christine says:

    1. Gorgeous photos! Seriously, Martha Stewart Living quality.
    2. Guacamole & black bean pizza= genius. As well as the roasted garlic spread.
    3. I know you have to be, but you are SO unbelievably creative with your adaptations and menu ideas. Really inspiring to see how you’re making the best of food allergies & diet limitiations.

  2. yum. love the sound of your pizza dough and will have to give it a try at our house!

  3. I’ve had Christina’s pizzas. They are A-MA-ZING!! With a little extra zing in there for flavor!

  4. Zoe says:

    Thanks for Pizza Week. I’ve loved it. I even posted about how I struggle with dough so this week has taugh me a lot. I’m going to pick up that book and also give this recipe a spin.
    Keep posting! I’ll keep reading. 🙂

  5. Lana says:

    I just borrowed the first bread in five minutes a day book from the library, but I have to say… I find using the breadmaker equally as easy. I found my dough didn’t rise much.. but maybe I just need more practice.

    You are totally rocking those pizzas. They look so crispy. Yum!

  6. Alexis says:

    Chris you are always and forever the Queen of Creative Cooking Solutions! Great pics too.

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