When I first started eating a paleo-inspired diet and cutting out grains, I have to admit that I missed rice. Eating a nice curry or slow-cooked meal just wasn’t the same without something soft and fluffy to soak up all the liquid.
Luckily I’ve discovered an awesome alternative: cauliflower rice.
Cauliflower is one of most versatile vegetables to cook with. Because of its neutral taste and versatility, it’s a great substitute for grains like rice and quinoa or starchy vegies like potato. It can be made into a pizza base, replace mashed potato on the top of a Shepherd’s Pie, or – one of the best things – become cauliflower rice.
Cauliflower rice is a wonderful alternative that still soaks up the flavours of the main dish, is easy to make (and quicker than traditional rice), adds a serving or two of vegetables to your meal, and cuts out processed grains. What’s not to love about that?
The important thing is not to cook it too long so it turns to mush. You want it to be slightly crunchy. Play around with how many minutes you microwave it for (as little as 3 or as many as 6) to get the texture that you like best.
CAULIFLOWER RICE Serves 4
1 head of cauliflower, stalk/leaves removed
- If you have a food processor, cut cauliflower into large chunks and finely process until it looks like rice. Alternatively, use a grater. (Although this takes a bit longer, I prefer this method as it produces a more rice-like consistency.)
- Place cauliflower in a glass dish, cover with plastic wrap and microwave for 4 minutes.
- Serve as you would normal rice.
After microwaving, stir in these ingredients (along with salt and pepper to taste) for extra flavour:
- Lightly seasoned rice: 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 2-3 chopped spring onions and salt and pepper.
- Lemon rice: The zest and juice of one lemon.
- Herbed rice: 1 bunch of your favourite fresh herb/s, eg. basil, parsley or coriander.
- Curried rice: 2 teaspoons turmeric and 1 tablespoon curry powder.
- Spanish rice: 400g can of diced tomatoes, 1 tablespoon sweet chilli sauce, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, and 1 diced green or red capsicum.
Image credit: nutritionstripped.com