Saturday, May 17, 2014

Fooled Ya Cheese Sticks {S}

     Words can't describe the crispy, tasty, cheesy, goodness of cheese sticks. Especially, when they've just come out of the oven. And the best part about these is, you actually get a serving of vegetables if you eat a few! :) Ok, you got me. Maybe the best part isn't that it has vegetables in it. The best part would probably be getting to eat the cheese sticks!
     Some of my siblings like to eat these with hot sauce. It reminds them of a local pizzeria that we have. They serve the best cheese sticks with a mild dipping sauce. I have to say, I think I like these just as well. They also remind me of Little Caesars! :)
     This is a delicious cheese stick recipe I created. I adapted the base recipe of the Fooled Ya Pizza recipe in the book. I wouldn't recommend doing the recipe in the book, because in my opinion that version was way too eggy. It wasn't crispy at all. Or sturdy. We had to use a fork to eat it. I like to do what I call "tweaking", when a recipe isn't how we want it. I'll try something different or substitute in a lot of things. It worked with this one (sometimes my "tweaking is unsuccessful).
     Not one of my family members doesn't LOVE these cheese sticks. My brother Kaleb said, "I like this better than Trim Healthy Mama." I replied, "This is Trim Healthy Mama!" I didn't tell him what they were made of until after he had eaten five of them. :)
     For all you THM beginners, this recipe requires no specialty ingredients. No almond flour, flax meal, protein powder, or any of that stuff you have trouble pronouncing the name of. You could make a nice pizza crust with this too.
     If you want, make yourself some marinara sauce to go with them! I think I will next time.

Fooled Ya Cheese Sticks {S}

  • 2 (16 oz.) bags frozen cauliflower, lightly steamed
  • Scant, 1 1/4 cups carton egg whites
  • 4 lightly packed cups shredded PS mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic, optional 
  • salt, garlic/onion powder, and Italian seasoning (to taste)
  • 1/4 cup ricotta, optional
  • 1 1/2 lightly packed cups shredded PS mozzarella
  • 1 1/2 lightly packed cups shredded monterey jack cheese
  • Italian seasoning, optional

     Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
     After lightly steaming cauliflower (just until warmed all the way through), place in colander and press all liquid possible out with a paper plate or paper towels.
     Place cauliflower in food processor or blender and pulse to rice size pieces.
     Lay cauliflower out in a thin layer on paper towels and soak up all the liquid possible with another layer of paper towels on top, OR you can wrap up cauliflower in an old dish towel and squeeze out all the liquid possible. (The main idea is to try to get ALL the liquid POSSIBLE out so that your crust will be crispy and not a soggy-eggy mess.)
     Place your cauli-flour (although it looks, nor feels nothing like flour) in blender. Add egg whites and pulse to combine. Add cheese and seasonings and blend well for a couple minutes, stopping to scrape the sides every so often.
     Plop cauli-crust mixture onto a parchment lined (about 11x15-in) jelly roll pan or rimmed cookie sheet. Spread mixture out evenly, filling the sheet/pan.
     Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes.
     Remove from oven. Carefully, grab sides of parchment paper and flip the crust over (move the crust back on the pan with 2 spatulas if you miss the pan a bit).
     Bake in oven for 20 minutes more.
     Remove from oven and spread optional ricotta layer on top. Sprinkle cheeses and optional Italian seasoning on top.
     Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes more or until desired brownness/bubbly goodness is achieved.

Lightly steamed cauliflower

Pressing out the water with a paper plate.

Pressed cauliflower

Rice size cauliflower pieces

Spreading the cauliflower on paper towels.

After the cauliflower was pressed with another layer of paper towels.

Cauli-flour in blender

I had to push all the cheese in with a rubber spatula.

Blended cauli-crust mixture

After I spreaded it out on the rimmed cookie sheet.

My crust missed the pan some after I flipped it, so I took 2 spatulas and carefully (so that my crust didn't rip) pulled it back on the pan.

While the crust was baking for 20 minutes more, I shredded the cheese.

The crispy crust is now ready to be topped.

Ricotta layer

Mozzarella, monterey jack, and parmesan

After the cheese sticks baked for 10 minutes. Yummy!!

I think that these are delicious with hot sauce and crushed red pepper. I bet they would be really good with a homemade marinara sauce too!

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  1. Wow! These look so yum! And what a great photo tutorial! Thanks for sharing the recipe :)

  2. Sophia, I found your blog, and now I am ready to make those yummy breadsticks I tasted at your house a few weeks ago. I can't wait to try this recipe along with the others you have posted. Great job on the blog :) Looking forward to more posts too!!! Cathy Potter

    1. Thanks! :)
      Let me know how they turn out! :)

  3. I am going to try these soon. They look awesome! Thanks for sharing at Savoring Saturdays. You will be featured when it goes live at 7 pm!

  4. This sure does sound amazing! My family loves cauliflower crust pizza, but I've never tried it as cheese sticks. Thanks for sharing at Savoring Saturdays! I hope you'll come by again tonight; the party starts at 7pm!