A while back it became popular to substitute smushed up, over cooked cauliflower for mashed potatoes in an effort to save calories.
People boiled or steamed chunks of the cruciferous veggie and mashed, blended or electric mixed it to get the consistency of mashed potatoes. Then, they’d add lots of butter and milk and all the other good stuff one would add to make really yummy mashed potatoes. While the cauliflower mush does taste okay, it isn’t mashed potatoes and with all the stuff added it kinda makes the calorie cutting point, mute.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not putting the kibosh on mushed cauliflower, I’m just gearing up to offer a few options that I feel maintain the integrity of the often under appreciated, very nutritious brainy looking orb.
First — Cauliflower a cruciferous vegetable, in the same plant family as broccoli, kale, cabbage and collards. Cauliflower, along with the rest of the cruciferous family is rich in cancer fighting properties as well as lends support to our body’s detox system, antioxidant system, and its inflammatory/anti-inflammatory system. For detailed health benefits visit here.
A few of my fav details — One cup of cauliflower contains about 28 calories, 3.5 grams fiber, omega 3’s and 2.5 grams protein.
Personally, I’m not a massive fan of cauliflower. However, realizing it’s health benefits and in an effort to eat a diverse diet I’ve come to appreciate, and actually enjoy it.
Here are my suggestions — Choose a head that’s compact with creamy white florets. An old cauliflower will be yellowish. Whatever you do make sure to rinse the orb well. All those nooks and crannies provide lots of room for fungus to hide. Don’t wash until you’re ready to use.
According to the World Wide Web the best way to prepare cauliflower is to sauté it. I’ve never done that so I can’t say, but I suggest we all give it a try. The second best (for reasons of nutrition) way to cook cauliflower is to roast it, which I am proficient at.
Here is how I roast my cauli
In a large bowl, stir together:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon curry power
1 teaspoon coarse salt
Take one large head cauliflower cut into florets and toss to cover with the mixture. Bake in a single layer on a cookie sheet at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until chunks are browned on the bottom and tender when pierced with a knife. Serve hot or at room temp. Very yummy!
Obviously eating cauliflower raw is a very good option, dip it in hummus and put some in your salad. They say it’s good with red onion and feta. Give it a try and let me know what you think.
October 3, 2011 at 12:27 pm
I have an even easier way that I roast my cauliflower:
– Cut the cauliflower up into florets (I like to be able to eat them in one or two bites). If feeling ambitious, add in a few peeled cloves of garlic (trim off the root end)
– Toss with some olive oil (a tablespoon or so – just want to lightly coat all of it) and a pinch of salt. Put on baking pan in single layer
– Roast at 350° – 400°F for 20 min (temp is flexible – if you’re making something else at the same time, use that temp). If not done yet (you think it’s too crunchy), stir it around a bit and leave in a bit longer.
The roasted garlic adds a nice flavor and the garlic mellows when baked. You can also toss in some crushed red pepper, or bake with a smattering of bread crumbs on top for extra crunch, or squeeze on a little lemon juice before serving. Soooo easy. And tasty.
And then there are recipes for using cauliflower in mac and cheese…what’s not to like? Same problem as cauliflower mashed potatoes though as it’s not very waistline-friendly.
October 3, 2011 at 12:40 pm
Garlic makes everything yummy! Thanks for the idea.
Yea…trying to keep things easy and figure friendly…
October 8, 2011 at 12:58 pm
I just added this site to my feed reader, great stuff. Cannot get enough!
October 24, 2011 at 10:06 pm
I have roasted cauliflower using this method, except I also throw in Brussel sprouts in the mix……very tastee : )
October 25, 2011 at 7:33 am
Yum!!!! Thanks for the idea!