Will cauliflower be the new pepperoni?

Aug. 4, 2011 | by Cherryh A. Butler

Cauliflower is the latest addition to the menu at Anthony's Coal Fire Pizza based in Florida. Although it may seem like an unlikely pizza topping, Owner Anthony Bruno said positive customer reaction was the reason it's now available in all 25 locations.

"A lot of people hate cauliflower, so a customer's first reaction is surprise because the pizza is delicious," Bruno said. "We started it as an off-menu item in a few select stores, and the reaction was so positive that we've rolled it out in all our locations."

Bruno created the Roasted Cauliflower Pizza using the expertise handed down to him by his grandmother. For many years, her traditional Italian recipe for pasta with cauliflower had been one of the most popular dishes at Bruno's previous restaurant, Anthony's Runway 84, in Ft. Lauderdale.

"It seemed like a unique, but perfect fit for Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza," Bruno said.

What's it taste like?

The pizza chefs roast and coal-fire the cauliflower in olive oil, making it softer than raw cauliflower. They top the sauce-less pizza with only breadcrumbs and mozzarella cheese.

"The combination of cauliflower on pizza just works," Bruno said.

Outside the Pizza Box is a recurring story featuring something innovative a pizza operator is doing to grow business. If you think you are doing something "Outside the Pizza Box," contact Editor Cherryh Butler at cbutler@networldalliance.com.

Topics: Food & Beverage , Pizza Toppings

Cherryh A. Butler / Cherryh Butler has been a reporter for nearly 10 years, writing on a variety of topics ranging from the restaurant industry to business and health and fitness news. Before joining FastCasual.com as editor, she oversaw KioskMarketplace.com and PizzaMarketplace.com and contributed to RetailCustomerExperience.com. She's also written for several daily newspapers, magazines and websites, including The Kansas City Star and American Fitness magazine.
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