For those of you cutting down on carbs such as rice and potatoes, the magic of cauliflower can put your favorite dishes back on the menu. Cauliflower “rice” and cauliflower “potatoes” have the same consistency as real rice and potatoes. Because cauliflower is relatively bland, it can absorb your favorite savory flavors and mimic your favorite side dishes. The benefit? All the taste without the carbohydrates and high hypoglycemic impact of rice and potatoes. Convinced? Here’s how to make cauliflower rice and potatoes at home:
Place fresh cauliflower florets in a food processor and pulse until the florets break down into granules the size of rice or couscous. You can use this “rice” to replace any grain in salads, recipes, or as a base for ethnic dishes. You can also cook cauliflower rice in butter or olive oil to make your favorite version of fried or curried rice. Cauliflower rice is a great way to sneak more vegetables into your diet while hanging on to your favorite rice-based meals.
To freeze dry cauliflower rice, or any dish made with cauliflower rice, spread the “rice” on freeze drying trays and process. To re-hydrate, spritz with warm water until it returns to its original consistency.
Cauliflower mashed potatoes are even easier than real mashed potatoes. After all, cauliflower cooks faster and doesn’t require peeling! To make cauliflower mashed potatoes, steam or boil cauliflower florets until tender. Drain until almost dry. Add florets to warm milk, garlic, salt and butter and blend with a mixer until fluffy. Cauliflower has a slightly nutty flavor, and because there’s no starch, it will never get gummy like mashed potatoes can if over-whipped. To eliminate dairy, save a cup of the liquid used to steam or boil the cauliflower then use it instead of milk or cream.
To freeze dry cauliflower mashed potatoes, spread on freeze drying trays and process. To re-hydrate, add warm water and stir until it returns to its original consistency.
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