‘Fat Head’ Pizza on the Bariatric Portion Plate
In the last 6 years I have experimented a great deal with making a bariatric-friendly pizza. So I started out with my basic tortilla one (see here) which can be on the table in under 15 minutes and is very good and perfect for single dining. I have since flirted with the idea of a cauliflower-based one (see here) and that, even if a little more time-intensive, is impressively tasty. Just recently whilst trying to cut down on simple carbs I have tinkered with using chickpea flour in the base for additional protein in a new version and it’s been a success (recipe to come at a later time when finally perfected). Today, responding to a request, I have tried a new type
– a low carb, grain-free and gluten-free alternative. My contact had seen a ‘Fat Head’ Pizza recipe on-line and wondered how it worked out.
Now I have no idea where the term ‘Fat Head’ came from although I have googled extensively but know there are quite a few versions of this pizza base doing the rounds on the internet. It’s basically a pizza made with a base of cheese, ground almonds and egg. It promised to be beautifully browned and crisp and low in carbs. Some of the methods for making it seemed a bit labour-intensive (who has time to roll dough between sheets of non-stick parchment); and using the oven and then the grill and back to the oven again? So ours is a basic simplified version that works (we think) just as well.
My first attempt has been a real hit here in the Bariatric Cookery Test Kitchen – rarely have I seen a pizza demolished so quickly at tasting time! The base, easy to make, turned out to be very cheesy, crisp and most flavoursome and cooked in an impressively fast time. The toppings are entirely yours to choose at will and can be infinitely variable. For the one shown I went a fairly obvious and typical route of using my tomato salsa type sauce (just canned chopped tomatoes cooked with onion and herbs until very thick) with a little additional mozzarella cheese, snipped bacon/ham, thinly sliced chorizo, red onion, sliced tomatoes and some fresh Greek basil.
Tomorrow I plan to make it again using the first of my own home-grown asparagus spears (there’s not enough yet for a larger asparagus dish) and perhaps some feta. But I’m sure you’ll have your own favourite.
Try it and see if you agree that although the fat content is higher than usual, the carbs are cut dramatically but not at the expense of the flavour. It’s filling, so satiety (and so satisfaction wise) one small slice is all you need to get a proper pizza hit that you may well have been longing for ….
‘FAT HEAD’ LOW CARB PIZZA (THAT’S ALSO GLUTEN AND GRAIN FREE)
175 g /1¾ cups grated Mozzarella cheese
2 tbsp cream cheese (with herbs if liked)
50 g/2/3 cup ground almonds/almond flour
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp dried mixed herbs (I used Herbes de Provence) – optional
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Toppings – I used about 5 tbsp tomato salsa then a mixture of bacon/ham, cheese, vegetables, chorizo, onion and herbs (but use what you like best)
- Preheat the oven to 220 C/425 F/gas 7. Prepare a baking sheet with a sheet of non-stick parchment or easy-glide so the pizza does not stick to the base when cooked. Alternatively spray a non-stick sheet with a little oil or low-fat cooking spray.
- Mix the Mozzarella with the cream cheese in a bowl. Microwave on HIGH (full power) for about 30 seconds. Remove, stir and microwave for a further 20-30 seconds until softened.
- Add the ground almonds/almond flour, egg, herbs if used, and salt and pepper to taste, mixing well. Press onto the baking sheet into roughly a 20-cm/8-inch round. Stab a few times with a fork.
- Bake in the oven for 8-10 minutes until risen and golden. If you like a very crisp pizza (it should be crispy enough without) then carefully turn over with a fish slice or spatula and cook for a further 2 minutes.
- Top with the salsa and chosen toppings and bake for a further 5-10 minutes.
- Cut into wedges to serve.
MAKES 1 X 20-cm/8-inch pizza (cuts into 6 wedges)
WLS PORTION: 1 wedge
CALORIES (for the base only) per wedge: 146
Images copyright of Bariatric Cookery (UK) Ltd