This is a post I’ve owed you for a really long time. “You” who became smitten with the idea of a chickpea flour pizza crust, first topped with dates, olives and feta and a few weeks later with shawarma and chopped salad.

Which I easily imagine to be all of you (even if you’re new here and have no idea which recipes I’m talking about) because, uh, what’s not to love? Chickpea flour is more nutritious than white flour, and has awesome flavor that works surprisingly well with my favorite toppings, and makes a super simple gluten-free pizza crust.

But I especially owe it to “you” who tried the chickpea flour pizza crust and failed. It happens to the best of us. We put out a recipe that we really love and then for various reasons, some obvious and some unknown, it just doesn’t work for other people. Oh, how I wish I could be a fly on “your” wall.

So the thing about the chickpea flour pizza dough is that it was actually nothing like “dough.” I found the mixture to be pretty wet, but still able to be formed when gently rolled between two sheets of parchment paper, and I clarified this to a few people who asked. (I suppose I didn’t go into enough detail in the original post.)  But I can’t forget the day when Ben and I were driving along the gorgeous Columbia River gorge and instead of taking in every bit of beautiful scenery, I was frantically google-chatting with Branny, whose pizza crust was in the process of looking more like pancake batter. I assured her it wasn’t supposed to be that wet, from my own experience. B remedied the situation by adding more flour, but I still wanted to get to the root of the problem. The only difference I could guess was the source of our chickpea flour. On a mission to see if it truly made a difference, I sent her a bag from my local Mediterranean market and asked her to try again. Strangely, that seemed to do the trick. Natalie had a similar experience to Branny. I’m lucky these gals are still my friends!

While I can’t possibly know why some brands of chickpea flour work differently than others, I still wanted to “fix” my recipe because, to be honest, I really did want a roll-able dough. Not a wet sticky mass. After a few rounds of experimenting with psyllium husk powder, I’m excited to say we’re there. Psyllium husk works as a natural gluten-free binder. I suspect that no matter your source of chickpea flour, this addition will make a drastic difference – try it and let me know how it goes!

It might not roll out quite as beautifully as regular pizza dough but you can be OCD like me and trim it to fit your plan, whether that’s 1 biggie pizza or a few small ones. (See? We’ve done both. We really love this crust!)

It appears we really like our pizza with grilled eggplant lately, but that’s not all. You’d be surprised at how versatile this crust is – and so much tastier than plain ol’ flour. So now that I’m no longer keeping my favorite new-and-improved pizza crust a secret from you, are ready to give it a second (or first) try? Please tell me yes

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Chickpea Flour Pizza Crust

Yield: 1 large pizza (8 slices)

Ingredients:

1 envelope active dry yeast
1 teaspoon coconut sugar or other granular sugar (white sugar, succanat, etc.)
1 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups (180gm) chickpea flour, plus additional 2-3 tablespoons as needed*
4 tablespoons psyllium husk powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

*Some chickpea flour may absorb more liquid than others. I tested this recipe with two kinds, one from my local Mediterranean market and the other Bob's Red Mill, and found that the latter required a little extra flour.

Directions:

Place yeast and coconut sugar in small bowl. Pour in the warm water and whisk to dissolve. Let stand for 10 minutes, or until foamy.

Combine chickpea flour, psyllium husk powder and salt in a medium bowl and whisk together. Add the yeast mixture and stir to combine. Turn onto the counter and gently kneed for a few minutes. If needed, moisten hands to help the dough stick together. Alternatively, add 1-2 tablespoons additional flour if the dough is sticky. It will not be "elastic" like wheat pizza dough, but it will come together in a slightly rough ball. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 500ºF or turn on grill to medium-high heat.

Cut a large square of parchment paper and place the dough on top. Gently roll to about 1/8" thick. (My dough was not very sticky and I was able to transfer it to my countertop, and this made it easier to roll nice and thin.) Treat this dough more like a pastry crust than a normal pizza dough; that is, you can trim the edges and use these pieces to patch any tears by moistening and rolling them together.

Transfer dough to a pizza pan or baking sheet. Add desired toppings. Bake in preheated oven or grill for 10-15 minutes, or until browned and crisp.

Nutrition Facts:

Amount Per Serving
Calories 106.9
Total Fat 0.0 g
Saturated Fat 1.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 156.2 mg
Potassium 69.7 mg
Total Carbohydrate 20.8 g
Dietary Fiber 10.5 g
Sugars 2.6 g
Protein 4.5 g

Cara Lyons, www.carascravings.com

This post is linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays for 7/3.