Friday, October 16, 2009

Gluten-free shredded potato pizza crust recipe

Gluten-free shredded potato pizza crust recipe
Desperate Dinner was one of the highlights of my first couple of years in grad school.  It started a couple of months before I moved to Michigan, and I quickly joined in once I got here.  A group of students in my program would gather every Sunday night, eat dinner together (there was a rotating schedule for cooking), and watch Desperate Housewives.  About ten people showed up each week, so it wasn't too overwhelming to cook for everyone... that is, until the group grew exponentially.  At some point things got out of control and we had 25 people showing up each week.  And cooking for people's dietary needs/desires was quite a challenge (we had vegans, vegetarians, and carnivores, along with people who wouldn't eat sugar, eggs, mushrooms, tomatoes... and the list goes on).  Plus, even if you managed to avoid all of those things, transporting that much food was quite a feat.  On one dreadful occasion, I was trying to carry too many things at once and ended up dropping a huge dish of spinach and artichoke dip in the hall outside of my apartment. (It baked into the carpet and, 3 years later, I still get a kick out of hearing visitors ask whether it's vomit.) We quickly switched to a pot-luck style.

Even then, we couldn't sustain the gathering.  It was overwhelming and, understandably, nobody wanted to host that many people every week (and most of us didn't have nearly enough room).  I was sad to see it go, but it also came at a time when I could easily occupy my Sunday night with other things, either research or softball.  Recently, a different group has initiated Sunday night gatherings (minus the "desperate").  I've only been able to go once, and it's hard to tell if it will last.  For now, I'll enjoy it while I can.

Last week's theme was pizza.  The host made a bunch of dough and pizza sauce, and everyone else brought a pizza topping.  I was excited because it was the perfect opportunity to make a gluten-free crust.  But then life got in the way, and I ran out of time and energy to make a real dough.  Luckily, I remembered a recipe for a potato crust, and I got to work.

Weekend Herb BloggingI loved this crust.  It was simple, and was a crispy base for my favorite pizza toppings.  I highly recommend this crust even if you can eat gluten, and I saw several of my friends eying my pizza as they waited for theirs to cook.  (Don't worry, they were in good hands because our host made my former favorite whole wheat pizza dough from 101 Cookbooks.)  I still want to make a crust with gluten-free flours, but this was a fabulous alternative and I didn't miss out on anything that night.  This is a great way to use potatoes, so I'm submitting this to Weekend Herb Blogging, which is organized by Haalo from Cook (almost) Anything At Least Once, and is hosted by Cinzia from Cindystar this week.

Gluten-free shredded potato pizza crust recipe
Shredded potato pizza crust (adapted from Gluten Hates Me But I'm Surviving)
(Printable version)

1 2/3 cups shredded russett potatoes (I used 2 1/2 small, unpeeeled potatoes)
pinch of salt
1 egg, beaten
1/2 red onion, grated

Put the potatoes in a colander, sprinkle with salt, and let sit for 10 min.  Then press as much moisture as possible out of the potatoes.  Combine the potatoes, egg, and onion in a small bowl.  Lightly oil a pie pan, and press the mixture into the bottom.  Bake at 400 for 20 min, then spritz with olive oil and bake an additional 10-15 min (until crust is nicely browned).  Makes 1 individual pizza.


Kelly said...

Yum. That sounds like a fun alternative to crust that even if someone could eat gluten would be a fun way to switch it up. I can see how 25 people would become overwhelming but it also sounds like it was a fun gathering. I wish I could convince my friends to get together for something like that.

Tasty Eats At Home said...

Cool. I love this idea! And it's definitely cheaper than pizza dough, much less gluten-free pizza dough! You might try Pamela's bread mix - there's a pizza dough recipe on the back that's great. The texture is so much like gluten-y pizza dough, it's great.

Kathy said...

Cool recipe, I will be trying it soon. This would work really well for people who are grain free.
Thanks for sharing!

Katie said...

Kelly - It's a fun alternative. I was just thinking that it would be perfect for restaurants wanting to provide a gluten-free option, but not willing to invest in gluten-free flours.

Alta - I'll have to try Pamela's mix. I've been meaning to do it for a while, but always leave the store without it for some reason or another.

Kathy - That's a great point - I didn't think about the fact that this is perfect for the grain-avoiders.