Gallo Lea pizza

Before I was in my 30s, the only pizza I ever made “from scratch” came in a box. You probably know the one I’m talking about, right? The narrow blue and white box, with a photograph of a slice being lifted on a spatula? When I was a kid, pizza night meant opening that box and mixing the floury powder with water.

These days, of course, I require a bit more from my pizza than that ubiquitous box requires. Danny and I have been making homemade gluten-free pizza dough, and working on new recipes, for years. It’s not as hard to make homemade pizza as it might seem.

However, having a very active,  happy little kid (who is turning 3 this week!) in the house, sometimes pulling at my leg as I cook, I understand more why people like food fast. Most packaged foods come with too many ingredients, especially the ones I can’t pronounce. This is why we’re so happy to announce GalloLea pizza kits as our latest sponsor.

GalloLea has a whole-grain gluten-free pizza kit that we honestly love. It’s made with organic, whole grains: brown rice, teff, buckwheat, and sweet rice flours. There’s yeast and salt and not much else. Every ingredient is a whole food, something recognizable. Even better for folks with other food sensitivities, GalloLea pizza do not contain corn, soy, xanthan gum, or guar gum.

The pizza kit arrives with the dry ingredients as well as a packet of homemade tomato sauce. The recipe comes from Tom’s grandmother, and it’s good. Like the pizza crust, the sauce is made with only real food: tomatoes, basil, olive oil, etc. I loved the taste.

As you might know, if you have been reading for awhile, we like to take on sponsors whose food we love and whose story moves us. This company has a wonderful story. I’ll let them tell you about it:

“GalloLea Pizza kits have not been a clear and straight path but one of those happy outcomes from adversity. Not unlike Gluten Free Girl!

We were married in a still-thriving economy of early 2008. One year later the big crash came and Tom lost his job. His background is highly specialized in ceramics engineering and not highly employable in our town. I’m a graphic designer and I lost my biggest client (they were in the building industry).

We didn’t want to leave our home, so we decided to work on ‘new business ideas’ While Tom was working on several ideas he was also playing in the kitchen and decided he wanted to work on a ‘healthy’ version of pizza crust. His sauce is his grandmother’s, a family recipe.

We kept feeding our friends as he kept making pizzas, to rave reviews. We took a ‘how to start a food biz’ class that summer, just for the heck of it…and one seed grew to another: the whole wheat pizza kit was born.

It wasn’t long after we started ‘sampling’ the pizza that people where asking if we had gluten free. We had a close friend with celiac and had tried some of the grocery options outside of her homemade recipes. We wanted to make a crust that was different than what was out there: more flavor, with a texture closer to pizza. It was tough to find the right combination of flours. Believe me, we tried them all, in every combination.

By this time we were fully into the Pizza Kit and excited and determined to make a really delicious gluten free crust. Not only yummy, but healthy. We made the decision to NOT use corn or soy because of other allergies and overuse of those products.

The feedback we get is overwhelmingly that we did what we set out to do. There are many people who can eat gluten and prefer the Gluten Free Pizza for its thin crust and whole grain taste.

We’re so pleased about the happy accident of the Pizza Kit. The tag line for GalloLea Organics didn’t come lightly and as simple as it is, it’s meaningful to us: Good food, happy people.”

We like these folks.

A couple of weeks ago, when we had the strawberry shortcake party, I made this pizza to photograph it, then I put it down on the table. Little hands reached and grabbed for slices of this whole-grain, gluten-free pizza. Those kids loved this pizza. It was gone in a minute.

We think you’ll like GalloLea pizza too. We hope you’ll click on their ad to buy some pizza kits today.

added later

For those of you who expressed concern about the cross-contamination issue, Tom of GalloLea posted this in the comments:

“GalloLea Organics produces whole wheat pizza dough and gluten free pizza dough. We also produce gluten free sauces. We take the term gluten free seriously. Although we have not been in the food business for very long I have 20 years of sub-ppm high purity powder processing experience. Here is what we do to ensure the integrity of our products.

Every lot of our GF dough mix is tested using the EZ Gluten test kit. It has a detection limit of 10 ppm (parts per million by weight) gluten. (It is our understanding that the proposed federal definition of gluten free is less than 20 ppm gluten.) Each of our lots is made up of about four batch mixes. We take nine samples of each batch, about 36 samples, and combine them to make a composite for testing. Sampling is the most difficult component of purity analysis. Because our product is a dry mix of powders of similar particle size and we take a large number of samples, our sampling is excellent.

We purchase our GF flours from a different distributor than our gluten flours.
We store our GF flours in a cooler away from any other flours.

Our processing is blending, weighing and sealing. We do not use convection ovens or driers that are easily contaminated from other users.

We double clean our work area and equipment prior to GF processing. All gluten free product is removed from the building or stored in the cooler before we do any gluten processing. We have different color storage containers for whole wheat and gluten dough packs.

Our gluten free sauces are also produced with great care to avoid gluten contamination. We do not test every batch of sauce but we do test it.
You are welcome to come see us at work.

Thomas A. Gallo, Ph.D.
tom@GalloLea.com

23 comments on “Gallo Lea pizza

  1. MrsVJW

    Question — have you or they tried baking these pizzas on just the parchment? I am a crisp crust girl who never had much luck with baking on pans (always too soggy for my tastes) and I have also been the death of so many a pizza stone I’ve stopped using them, and I know with some prepared/precooked crusts, the only way to get a really crisp bottom crust is to put it on parchment and stick it in the oven, no pan involved.

      1. Susan Devitt

        The very crispest pizza crust will be on the grill (since most of us aren’t lucky enough to have a pizza oven!). We put the pizza right on the grill ON the parchment paper. The kit includes a high temp. parchment paper that does fine on the grill. Have your grill at the lowest temperature (about 450F) no need to par bake. What if you don’t have a grill? Put the pizza right on the oven rack ON the parchment paper. We recommend par baking for 5 minutes, then top it, back into the oven for a few more minutes, and it’s done. Very easy, we think you’ll love it.

  2. Tianna

    What is their situation as far as avoidance of cross-contamination? They obviously also manufacture a gluten-containing product and I couldn’t find anything addressing this issue on their website at first glance… I am crazy sensitive to even the smallest cross-contamination so I either have to learn the lesson the hard way (ouch!) or be reassured by the right people or some sort of certification statement ;). Thanks!

    1. shauna

      I will let them speak to this but I know they are careful. I am sensitive down to even the smallest part, and I have eaten this pizza happily several times now.

    2. Susan Devitt

      Hi Tianna–
      This is a great question! Here is what Tom has written up, we’ve distributed it to folks on request, but I’ll be posting it on our website:

      GalloLea Organics and Gluten Free Products

      GalloLea Organics produces whole wheat pizza dough and gluten free pizza dough. We also produce gluten free sauces. We take the term gluten free seriously. Although we have not been in the food business for very long I have 20 years of sub-ppm high purity powder processing experience. Here is what we do to ensure the integrity of our products.

      Every lot of our GF dough mix is tested using the EZ Gluten test kit. It has a detection limit of 10 ppm (parts per million by weight) gluten. (It is our understanding that the proposed federal definition of gluten free is less than 20 ppm gluten.) Each of our lots is made up of about four batch mixes. We take nine samples of each batch, about 36 samples, and combine them to make a composite for testing. Sampling is the most difficult component of purity analysis. Because our product is a dry mix of powders of similar particle size and we take a large number of samples, our sampling is excellent.

      We purchase our GF flours from a different distributor than our gluten flours.
      We store our GF flours in a cooler away from any other flours.

      Our processing is blending, weighing and sealing. We do not use convection ovens or driers that are easily contaminated from other users.

      We double clean our work area and equipment prior to GF processing. All gluten free product is removed from the building or stored in the cooler before we do any gluten processing. We have different color storage containers for whole wheat and gluten dough packs.

      Our gluten free sauces are also produced with great care to avoid gluten contamination. We do not test every batch of sauce but we do test it.
      You are welcome to come see us at work.

      Thomas A. Gallo, Ph.D.
      tom@GalloLea.com
      828–337-1037

  3. Kelly

    My favorite whole grain, gluten-free crust is the one by The Gluten Free Bistro. It has great flours like whole grain buckwheat, sorghum, organic coconut flour. The crust is already par baked so I can put anything I love on it an put it right in the oven on the rack so it gets nice and crisp, I have also done it on the grill. http://www.theglutenfreebistro.com/product/
    They also test all of their batches for gluten so I can really trust the product.

  4. Jen

    I don’t see anything on the website about how the ensure that the gluten free mix is not contaminated. They make wheat based mixes too, so that is a concern. Did they tell you have the prevent cross contamination and if they test for gluten?

  5. jeanelane

    My big problem with home-made pizza has been the sauce. I know the crust can make or break a pizza, but so can the sauce. I always spice mine up too much. So I will try this happily!

    1. Susan Devitt

      Hi Jeanelane–
      We are really proud of the sauce, it’s Tom’s gramma’s family recipe (Italian). It’s a complexity of spices that combine into a really nice taste, with little flavor surprises! We don’t care for pizza sauce that’s just plain tomato. Cop out. :)

  6. Charity

    Wow. How do you get pizza to be so gorgeous? And this, mind you, is asked from a woman who lives in Rome, Italy. With total admiration, I’ve recommended your blog to tons of parents seeking gluten-free recipes and now added your blog to my roll as well. Hope you don’t mind and even more, hope you keep writing, posting and inspiring.

    Best, Charity

  7. Tania

    I look forward to passing this recommendation on to my GF friends. Thanks for sharing.

    And a Happiest of Birthdays to Lu.

  8. Susan Devitt

    Tom and I have had so much new traffic to our website in the past two days, and quite a few orders for Pizza Kits, we just want to say THANK YOU to everyone! Today was another long day, driving 150 miles to Charlotte NC, doing two in-store demos, and driving home. It isn’t easy. So imagine that amidst all this someone left us a message on our phone… they just wanted to thank us for making our Pizza Kit, that it’s amazing they found this really great pizza they could eat! We get calls like this, and it always hits us with a sweet joy, and we smile, cause even though it’s tough, we’re doing something good. Yes, it’s just pizza, but it’s more than that. Someone said to us last week that ‘food is communion’ and it’s so true! It makes us really happy that we can be part of that. Thank you Shauna for sharing us with your wonderful community, and thank you all for checking out GalloLea!

  9. Yersinia

    I dunno about this one. The crust on that pizza looks terrible. Like cracked spackle. Pizza is supposed to be crispy and chewy, not dry and cracked. I’m not convinced.

    1. shauna

      Actually, this pizza is chewy and crisp. This particular crust was my fault. I was rushing around, trying to get too much done, and let this one cook a bit too long! But everyone loved it, as I wrote.

  10. Merideth

    Happy to see something coming from my neck of the woods, well, sort of– the southeast, anyway! Asheville, where I noticed this divine sounding pizza appears to be from (or from near) is a great city for eating gluten free. I can’t wait to get my hands on some to try out for my kids. Maybe it will make not eating pizza with the other kids less of a bummer, something I haven’t managed to accomplish quite yet. As usual, I found the inspiration I was looking for from your blog today…

  11. Sarah

    So happy to read this… I will definitely be trying these kits! I made my first homemade pizza last weekend from the Bob’s Red Mill mix, and had a terrible reaction to it. Pretty sure I’m sensitive to xanthan gum also. :( And Shauna’s homemade bread recipes without gums NEVER give me trouble! (well… not eating them. Making them is still an adventure!) It’s also nice to see someone in the southeast with good gluten free products — I’m in South Carolina, and it’s very difficult to find any GF products at all, even searching out specialty stores. So thank you also to the GalloLea folks!

  12. Susie

    Those deviled eggs look TO DIE for. Going to make some right now. Wish I had capers but will mix in olive tapenade as a sad (yummy) substitute.