Zucchini pizza crust via Nutrition Stripped.9190Today we're sharing a recipe from Nutrition Stripped, a brand new whole-food cookbook written by our friend McKel Hill. The photographs are gorgeous, and we love all the healthy recipe ideas!

Nutrition Stripped
Zucchini is a surprisingly chameleon like vegetable—I find myself using it frozen in morning smoothies, pureed in desserts, and, now, grated in pizza crust! Zucchini pizza is a great way to sneak in extra servings of vegetables, and it is naturally lower in carbohydrates and higher in fiber compared to traditional crusts. This recipe pays homage to a cauliflower crust, which is one of my most popular recipes from the blog. Both of these recipe components, the crust and pea pesto, can be enjoyed on their own, yet when combined, it’s evident they’re meant to be enjoyed together.

Zucchini Pizza Crust with Lemony Pea Pesto, serves 4

3 cups finely grated zucchini
1 to 2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 cup almond flour
2 tablespoons brown rice flour
2 eggs, beaten
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil, for drizzling

For the pesto (makes about 1 1/2 cups):

1 (10-ounce) bag frozen peas
2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted 
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons filtered water
2 tablespoons hemp seeds
1 tablespoon grated fresh lemon zest
juice of 1 lemon
pinch of sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

Place the grated zucchini in a strainer, sprinkle the salt on top, and gently toss until the salt is distributed. Allow the zucchini to sit and sweat excess moisture for 45 to 60 minutes. Transfer the zucchini from the strainer to a nut milk bag or cheesecloth. Wrapping the cloth around the zucchini entirely, use your hands to squeeze out any excess liquid. Repeat the process until the zucchini no longer releases liquid. Place the zucchini in a large bowl and add the flours, eggs, garlic, nutritional yeast, oregano, red pepper flakes, and black pepper to taste. Stir to combine well. Position one rack in the middle of the oven and another in the top position. Place a pizza stone (for a crispier crust) or a baking sheet lined with parchment paper on the middle rack.

Preheat the oven to 500 ̊F. Place a large piece of parchment paper on a clean countertop and drizzle it with olive oil. Spread the zucchini dough onto the parchment paper and form the dough into a large 10-inch round or oval, about 1/2 inch thick. Transfer the dough from the parchment paper directly to the hot pizza stone or lined baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Flip the pizza crust over and bake for an additional 10 minutes, until the crust is firm-crisp. Carefully remove the crust from the oven, spoon on your pizza sauce (pesto) to the desired thickness, and bake on the top rack for 5 to 7 minutes, until the sauce is warm. Remove from the oven. Top with garnishes (arugula, grated fresh lemon zest, lemon juice, and freshly ground black pepper) if desired, and serve immediately.

For the pesto:

Quick-thaw the peas by blanching in boiling water for 3 minutes or microwaving until soft. In a food processor or high-speed blender, combine the peas, pine nuts, garlic, oil, water, hemp seeds, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and pepper to taste and pulse until the mixture is well combined and thick. Adjust seasonings to taste. Store in an airtight glass container.

NscookbookI can't wait to make this at home! Congrats on your new book, McKel! 

Credits: Author: McKel Hill. Photography: McKell Hill, Katie Newburn and Kelsey Cherry.

At Home with Michelle Gage    Today we are welcoming Michelle Gage to the blog to share her lovely home with us! One look at that infamous flamingo wallpaper and you're sold, right? Her home also has amazing artwork, detail, and charm. 

At Home with Michelle Gage       "My home is located in Havertown, PA (right outside of Philadelphia). My husband (then boyfriend) and I started house hunting in the summer of 2013–a year after graduating college. We weren’t exactly sure of the neighborhood we wanted to be in. We had lived in the area for over a year and felt informed enough to start looking. We thought we found a great place–good location, recently renovated–but ultimately realized that we wanted to be the ones to customize the home. Our house hunt was called off for the next few months. Then, on a random snowy Saturday in February, I was looking at listings online. We had no plans that day, so figured we might as well check it out. We got there and fell in LOVE. The home needed work, but it had great bones.

At Home with Michellle Gage      "The living room definitely houses some of our favorite pieces. We love that space because it gets the best light. It’s really the show space of the house–displaying all of our thrifted finds! The best part of gathering is the hunt. I remember where I got each and every piece in our home, which means I remember the times my husband and I spent together searching. If you love vintage items but either don’t live near markets or don’t enjoy the hunt, Chairish is a great resource. I sell some of my extra goodies on there. It really just enables my vintage shopping addiction. 

At Home with Michelle Gage         "The sofa pillows and coffee table situation are Ikea. With print on print, the pillows help to calm down the crazy sofa. We used to have a big bench in front of the sofa, but it was feeling too bulky, so we switched it up. We simply painted two Lack end tables and placed them side by side to get a more open look.

At Home with Michelle Gage     "I think we’d both agree that the kitchen is our favorite space. It was a labor of love. We waited nearly two years to renovate it, so it’s been a long time coming. We did all of the work ourselves, so we were able to splurge on some of the special details (ones we might normally have to skip due to budget constraints). This is the space we were able to customize the most. We knew we wanted a light and bright space to inspire creative cooking. White cabinets were an obvious choice. Next, we landed on the finishes. The brushed brass hardware really POPS against the clean cabinets. The backsplash was a totally customized treat! We worked with Mercury Mosaics to create a one-of-a-kind design that mimicked ocean waves.

At Home with Michelle Gage"My husband wound up making the live edge table for two out of some wood we snagged at a garage sale! The amazing chairs from Wayfair completed the look. The original kitchen was a nightmare to put it lightly. We gutted the entire space and started with a blank slate. Living without a kitchen sink is something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy, so I think the struggles that we went through makes it all the more special.

At Home with Michelle Gage  Wallpaper/Cole & Son.

"The entryway table was just some worn piece taking up space in my parents' basement. It used to house the fax machine, which tells you how neglected it was. The teal legs were intact, so we scooped it up when we bought this house. It fits perfectly in the entryway.

At Home with Michelle Gage          "I don’t believe in bringing generic items into your home. Your home should be a reflection of your personality. It should be a space that you truly enjoy and miss when you leave it. I love all of the art. We recently counted up over 200 pieces in our whole home, many of which are in the living room. I find art everywhere–Goodwill, estate sales, flea markets. I am way too into portraits these days. I have collected dozens of oil portraits of strangers and sprinkled them throughout the home.

At Home with Michelle Gage           "Our home is always evolving. Since we are out hunting nearly every weekend, something new is always coming into the home. You can tell I’ve been hunting when the Chairish shop becomes full—in with the old, out with the even older! The living room is always changing. It’s the space that is the fullest, so I’m constantly rearranging it to find better homes for everything. We currently joke that we are fresh out of walls to fill. We’ve wallpapered what we can and hung art everywhere else. BUT somehow, we always find more room for a new favorite find!"

Love your home, Michelle! You can find more of Michelle on her interior design website, Chairish, and on Instagram.

Author: Michelle Gage. Photography: Kyle Born. Kitchen, powder room and swan wallpaper by Homepolish

Halloween Party Shopping Guide!There's only a few weeks left to plan the best Halloween bash of the season! The great thing about Halloween parties is that they give everyone a chance to let out their inner kid as all things cute and wacky are totally fair game. In case you've been hunting for the perfect party decorations, here's a list of our favorite Halloween must-haves that will spice up any creepy get together!

1. These adorable skull plates will not only decorate your table, but they'll also hold your spider-shaped appetizers as well.
2. Party fans are a quick way to make the perfect photo booth or dessert table backdrop. Just open and pin in place!
3. How about serving your Bloody Marys in one of these amazingly creepy glasses.
4. Wax lips (with vampire teeth!) are a must have for a photo booth prop.
5. Label your tasty confections with these cute mini pumpkin chalkboards.
6. The spider web-in-a-bag is a classic Halloween decoration that never goes out of style—perfect for a haunted entryway!
7. Hanging garlands is another easy way to add some color and texture to the party without a lot of effort.
8. In case your gang isn't the "full costume type", providing a few masks will give off a spooky vibe with minimal dress-up effort.
9. Make your tablescape scream Halloween vibes with this lace spiderweb tablecloth.
10. For the especially daring, try your hand at a ghoulish dessert with a jello brain mold!
11. Even your cheese tray can get into the spirit of things with these toothpicks.
12. These flashing light-up eyes would be perfect entangled in some spiderwebs in a dark corner (or maybe just peeking out of the chip bowl).
13. While I'm a fan of the classic "jello shot in the test tube" for a Halloween party, try something new by serving them in a syringe instead!
14. What's not to love about a giant candy corn?!
15. Were you thinking your party didn't need a 4 foot wide spider with eyes that glow?? Think again!
16. Honeycomb decorations are a great way to add some 3D color and texture to your party decor (assembly is so easy too!).
17. This black cat napkin can cross my path any day of the week—meow!
18. Spider web bowls are perfect for chips and popcorn (or fill them with fun sized Kit Kats please!).

Looks like all the ingredients for a great party if you ask me! While there's still plenty of time left to find the perfect creepy and cute additions for your big bash, don't wait too long or your ghost decorations won't be the only ones "boo-hooing" if you know what I mean. Happy Halloween!

Eye manicure DIYReady to take your nail polish game to the next level? Here's some of our favorite tutorials that you can do at home, like this cute eye mani.

Sherbet water marble mani DIYHow fun is the marbled look? This candy colored manicure uses a cool technique with water.

Hologram nail decal DIYThese hologram nail decals would be super fun for Halloween.

Do your own gel manicure at home!You only need three things to create your own gel manicure at home—no UV lamp required!

Ice cream ombre mani DIYSummer is over, but you could totally switch up the colors to create the perfect ombre look.

Holographic and iridescent nail polishesWe tested a bunch of holographic and iridescent nail polishes (so fun!). These made the list.

Emoji nail decal DIYEmojis forever! Pick your favorites and turn them into nail decals.

Simple nude mani (3 ways!)You can't go wrong with a classic nude mani (three ways!) in case you want to switch it up.

Super easy wink wink mani  * Wink * How cute is this one? And it's super simple to create.

Use nail wraps to create a geometric nail design!Feeling extra fancy? This nail wrap tutorial is so fun! 

Tag us with #ABMcrafty on Instagram if you try these! XO.

Hot Cauliflower Deep Dish Pizza (via abeautifulmess.com)This pizza recipe is very much inspired by Nashville hot chicken. My sister has taken me to all sorts of delicious Nashville spots over the past year, but probably the one I hear about most often from people who are visiting or thinking about visiting, etc. is hot chicken. Is it because the name is catchy? I don't know. It's become so popular that a certain fast food chain, which shall remain nameless, started making their own version too. Hmm. 

As many of you know, I eat a mostly vegetarian diet. I'm not 100% opposed to eating locally or humanely raised meat, but I prefer to focus on eating more vegetables since you can never really get enough of that in your diet anyway. So, I started thinking about trying to make some kind of hot chicken inspired recipe that focused on vegetables (cauliflower) instead of chicken. Maybe you've seen some of the cauliflower "wings" recipes floating around the Internet (this one especially piqued my interest), so I thought I'd use that concept as a jumping off point.

Hot Cauliflower Pizza (via abeautifulmess.com)  The result: a truly decadent and delicious vegetarian-friendly pizza! Plus you can easily use the cauliflower recipe on its own for a baked "wing" option if you like (see recipe notes at the end).

Hot Cauliflower Pizza, serves 3-4 as a meal
Cauliflower coating loosely adapted from Hattie B's Hot Chicken via Food Network

For the pizza dough:
3/4 cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant dry yeast
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-2 tablespoons cornmeal for dusting

For the cauliflower:
1 small head of cauliflower
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons hot sauce
1/2 cup bread crumbs (Panko is preferred here)
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 clove of garlic, minced

For the pizza topping:
1/4 cup pizza sauce (homemade or store-bought)
1 1/4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
10 slices of pickle (I used bread and butter chips pickles)

First, make the pizza dough. In a glass measuring cup or small bowl, stir the sugar into the warm water until dissolved. Pour the yeast over the top of the water and let it activate for 3-5 minutes. It should foam up a bit, that's how you know the yeast is working. 

Baked caulifower hot wingsIn a bowl, stir together the 2 cups all-purpose flour and salt. Then pour the yeast water in, and stir until a dough ball forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and press together, then knead for about 5 minutes. Be sure to continue to coat your work surface and hands with enough flour so the dough doesn't stick to everything. After about 5 minutes, the dough should feel smooth and elastic like. Add some flour to the mixing bowl, place the dough ball inside, sprinkle with a bit more flour, then cover with a clean kitchen cloth. Allow to rise in a cool or slightly warm, dry spot for about an hour until doubled in size. 

Meanwhile, make the hot cauliflower. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Remove the bottom leaves and stem from the cauliflower head and cut into florets. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, milk, and hot sauce. In another bowl, place the bread crumbs. Dip the cauliflower pieces in the hot sauce mix, then in the bread crumbs. Then place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Once you've dipped all the cauliflower pieces, bake for 20 minutes. 

Towards the end of the baking time, melt the butter and stir in cayenne, chili powder, brown sugar, and minced garlic. Once the cauliflower is done and out of the oven, brush each piece with the butter/spice mix. 

Nashville hot chicken caulifower recipeWith the oven still turned to 450°F, place your pizza stone or large cast-iron skillet inside to heat up. Roll out your pizza dough.

Remove the skillet from the oven (careful, it's hot now!), dust with cornmeal and place the dough inside. Bake for 5-6 minutes. Then remove from the oven, and top with sauce, cheese, and the cauliflower pieces. Bake for an additional 12-15 minutes, until the cheese is very bubbly and beginning to brown in spots. 

Remove from the skillet, slice, and top with pickles. Serve warm!

Hot Cauliflower Pizza (via abeautifulmess.com) Notes:

-You can skip the pizza and just eat the cauliflower pieces as "wings" or a main dish. If you'd like to make them vegan friendly, swap out the milk for nondairy milk (soy, almond, etc.) as well as the butter for a vegan-friendly butter such as Earth Balance. 

-I used Tapatio hot sauce, as it's what I happen to have on hand. I also really love Cholula. But any thin consistency hot sauce that you like should do the trick. 

-I really love the pickles here as it's like Nashville hot chicken and just goes well with the spice. But, if pickles on pizza just isn't your thing, you could swap this out for some chopped fresh herbs such as cilantro or parsley. 

Happy pizza making! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with the NEW A Beautiful Mess actions


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