Thursday, December 29, 2016

Polenta Pizza

I love pizza.  All kinds of pizza.  I’ve made braided pizza, pizza pockets, thin crust, thick crust.   I love it all.  When I was a kid my dad used to make this casserole—spaghetti pizza bake—that was like pizza and spaghetti had a baby, with the noodles as the crust and the cheese, pepperoni, etc on top.  I’ve not made it in years, but I still think about it.  Mmmmmm….pizza.   

So, one day we thought—what if we baked polenta and used it as a pizza crust?  Turns out it is just one more yummy option for when I get a pizza hankering. 

The polenta crust isn’t firm and crispy.  You don’t pick it up and eat it like "normal" pizza.  It requires a fork.  It is tender and flavorful in a way that seems perfectly suited for the savory tastes of pizza—tomatoes, onions, peppers, and so on.  The polenta crust also happens to be a gluten-free, which can be handy since I know more and more people doing away with gluten in their diet these days.  Not me, but people.  ;)  It is quick, affordable, and easy to make.   That makes is an all around winner in my book.
Polena Pizza Crust
2 ¼ C water
½ C milk (I use soy or almond)
¾ C polenta cornmeal

Combine the water and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil. 
Add the polenta.  Whisk and drop the heat to the lowest setting. 
Cook, covered, for 20 minutes. 
Remove from heat. 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. 
Spread the cooked polenta an even thickness over a lightly oiled baking sheet or pizza pan.  The size of the pan you use will determine how thick the crust is.  We usually use a 9x13 inch pan.
Bake for 15 minutes.
Take out of the oven and add sauce and toppings.
Bake for another 15 minutes.

Huzzah for new variations on pizza!

(Writing this post got me thinking that maybe I should try to veganize that spaghetti pizza bake of my dad's.  I'm sure there were eggs or something that held the spaghetti "crust" together.  I asked him for the recipe, which he thinks he still has...so we'll see!)

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