Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pizza Crust and cheese sticks........from scratch.

     I was out of my favorite pizza crust mix (Chebe pizza crust mix), AND I was craving some ZA (that's how the cool kids say pizza). What's a girl to do? Well she makes crust from scratch!!! I was a touch worried that it would turn out like a complete disaster. Yeast breads and gluten free don't exactly go hand in hand.
     I did some research looking at recipes, I'm not a huge fan of recipes that use 12 different kinds of flours. So those were quickly eliminated. I finally settled on a recipe where I could use my favorite flour mix (Annalise Roberts Mix) . I got out my pink beast of a mixer (my pretty pink kitchen aid, I just love that thing) and went to work.
I think that it is super important to "proof" your yeast. That means to test it out to make sure it works. You just add a little sugar to some warm water (not hot). Set it in a place that isn't drafty and watch it come to life. Just be sure to subtract the amount of liquids that you use to proof your yeast from your recipe. You don't want to end up with double the amount of liquids.
Mix all of the dry ingredients together, then begin adding the liquids. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl.
Spray your pan with cooking spray, then sprinkle corn meal over the bottom of the pan. I think this helps the crust not stick to the bottom of the pan and it adds a little texture.
The dough was not the kind of dough that could be rolled out. SO my solution was to put it into the pan. Spray some saran wrap with cooking spray. Place the sprayed wrap over the dough and press it out into the pan. I then let it rise in a warm spot for about 30 min.
After the crust had risen, I baked it for about 25 min. in a 400deg. oven. Then topped it with my favorite meat, veggies sauce and cheese. I then popped it back into the oven for another 20-25min.

In order to make the cheese sticks I simply sprayed the top of the dough with cooking spray after it had risen. I sprinkled the top with garlic powder and Italian seasonings. I then popped it in the oven just like I did for the pizza crust. Once it had baked for about 25 min. I took it out and topped it with cheese (use your favorites). It went back into the oven until the cheese was melted and brown. I used the pizza cutter to cut the crust into strips. Serve with warm pizza sauce.
     As always, I made some tweaks to the recipe that I found. First I should tell you that I DOUBLED the recipe so that I could make both the pizza and the cheese sticks. I think that I would even make some more changes the next time that I made this recipe. I would add in some Parmesan cheese into the dough and some Italian spices. I found that that dough didn't have alot of flavor. It was more of a vehicle to carry the pizza toppings, which is OK, but I like the dough to add to the flavor of the pizza. So next time I will be adding parm and seasonings. I did like that I could actually hold my piece of pizza and it didn't wilt and fall back onto the plate! If you have eaten much gluten free pizza, then you will realize how amazing that is. Ok so I will stop typing and just get on with the recipe that I concocted.

Pizza Crust, gluten free of course

2 Tbs. sugar
1 tsp. xanthan gum
½ tsp. salt
1 packet dry quick rise yeast
1 tsp. oil
¾ cup plus 1 tablespoon water (110°)

Proof the yeast. Combine the warm water, sugar and yeast packet in a small bowl. Let it set in a non drafty, warm place for about 10 min. The yeast should make a frothy layer on top of the water. If it doesn't, then that means your yeast isn't any good.

Mix your dry ingredients in the bowl of your electric mixer. Pour in the oil and your proofed yeast (yeast,water, and sugar). Mix until just blended.

Scrape the bowl and beater and beat on high for 2 min.

On a well greased pizza pan, spread out the dough. Let it rise in a warm place for 20-30 min. or until it has doubled in size. While the dough is rising, pre-heat the oven to 400deg. Bake the crust for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and top with your favorite toppings. Bake for another 20-25 minutes. Enjoy!




  1. This sounds so yummy. Can you help me with something. Im still new to being gluten free(medical reason not choice) and I don't understand the use of the xanthan gum. Can you help?