Root Love:: Aphrodisiac Gluten-Free Pizza. The root of love differs for all people. When it comes to roots that people love, there is one hot pink superstar—ruby red beets! Sweet earthy flavors of these bad boys are amazing! So sophisticated. So packed with health benefits. So OMG when prepared correctly.
Growing up, I hated beets with a capital “H”. I disliked them with a passion because they were presented to me canned or jarred. Really, Borscht out of a can? Yuck! Mom and Dad, what were you thinking? I never had them roasted, shredded raw or prepared fresh in anyway.
One evening at a dinner party (more like a weekly gathering with dear friends “Uylie” and “Koozy”(nicknames)—longstanding friends—served fresh Borscht soup one beautiful night in San Diego. On that evening, I fell in love…with beets—fresh beets. I’ve been playing around with these vibrant roots ever since, in every shade and every dish from savory to sweet.
When it comes to nutrition, Beets are super-stars! I say beets are detoxifying vitamin boosted Viagras! Well, maybe I shouldn’t go that far. But, looking back in history, Romans turned to beets as an aphrodisiac. Current studies show them to be packed with phytonutrients called betalains supporting antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. They also contain potassium, magnesium, Vitamin A, B & C and lutein wonderful for total body & eye health)—love that!
Why wouldn’t you eat beets? Maybe you’re not sure how to prepare them? Here’s an idea: one of my favorite ways to serve beets are paired with goat cheese. Put that atop your favorite pizza—bing-batta-boom—pop the cork of an earthy BIG red Cabernet and you’ve got a simply awesome Valentine’s Day meal for two, three, or four depending on the size of your crust and crowd.
So try it this Valentine’s Day for your loved ones—serve up some beets—why not try it on pizza…Gluten-Free Pizza of course. Below is the recipe for Root Love Pizza for all those lovers out there. Cheers!
If you want a ready-made gluten-free pizza crust, look for Udis in your local health food freezer. Or make your own, it’s quite simple.
1 cup brown rice flour
1 cup white rice flour
1 cup tapioca flour
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp raw organic sugar
1 tbsp yeast
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 tbsp olive oil
+ additional olive oil & and 1/8 cup cornmeal on hand for pan prep
olive oil (as sauce..just a light drizzle)
3 beets & all the greens
4 cloves diced garlic
goat cheese (or dairy free alt.)
cracked sea salt & fresh pepper
Preheat oven 350 degrees.
1) Chop beet greens off the beet root. Wash beet greens and chop in bite size pieces—set aside.
2) In medium size pot, place beets (the red roots) and pour in water to cover the beets. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes or until tender.
While beets are simmering, combine yeast and warm water in a small bowl. Set aside for 5 minutes.
3) In a large bowl, combine white rice flour, brown rice flour, tapioca flour, xanthan gum, baking powder, salt and sugar.
Add water and yeast mixture to dry ingredients along with olive oil. Stir till well combined.
Lightly oil baking sheet, then sprinkle a bit of cornmeal on pan. Scoop your dough out onto your pan. Using your hands, flatten and spread dough into the desired shape for your pizza. You may want to oil your hands if the dough gets sticky. Bake dough for 25 minutes.
4) Once the beets are done, immediately drain the hot water out of pan and place beets into a bowl of ice-cold water. Let them soak for 3-5 minutes. This makes it super easy to peel the skin from the beets. Using your fingers pull the skin right off the beets. Now your beets are ready to slice. Chop them into bite size pieces. Set aside.
5) Now in a frying pan over medium high heat, drizzle olive oil, garlic and chopped beet greens. Toss for 1-2 minutes. Add in your chopped beets. Remove from heat and this is your main pizza topping.
6) Remove pizza crust from oven. Drizzle olive oil on top of the crust and top with beets, beet greens, garlic and goat cheese. Add a little sea salt and pepper and place in oven to bake for 10-20 minutes. Edges should be golden and cheese melted.
Slice. Serve and Enjoy!
Note: How to pick good beets
When selecting beets, look for small or medium sized beets, deeply colored, with smooth and firm-skin and leaves attached. Note: Eat the beet after it’s been peeled and do not throw out those leaves, eat them! Beet greens cook-up just like spinach.