Straight-up cauliflower rice does not appeal to me. I love using veggies for grains when possible (even in more unusual dishes like Squash Breakfast Porridge and Bread-Free Stuffing). But I prefer my cauliflower rice heavily doctored, to make it satisfying and flavorful.
This recipe uses rich, umami flavors, bright herbs, sweet peas, and crunchy pistachios to make a beautiful cauliflower pilaf.
About the ingredients in cauliflower pilaf
Frozen peas add their natural sweetness and bright color to the dish. I always have a bag of frozen peas in the freezer for this dish… or as an instant ice-pack.
Tamari sauce or coconut aminos add the depth and saltiness associated with soy sauce. Coconut aminos are slightly sweeter and less salty, so that’s why the recipe calls different amounts depending on which option you choose.
Pistachios or cashews add needed crunch to the dish. You can substitute any toasted nut or seed. I’ve also topped this dish with tamari-roasted sunflower seeds sold at my health food store… that is phenomenal.
- 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 3 Tbs. coconut oil, olive oil, or avocado oil
- 2 small shallots, diced
- ½ cup sliced shiitake or button mushrooms
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tsp. tamari sauce or 1 Tbs. coconut aminos,available here
- 1 tsp. balsamic vinegar
- ½ cup frozen green peas
- 3 Tbs. chopped mint
- Juice of ½ lemon
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup chopped pistachios or toasted cashews
- First, make cauliflower rice by pulsing the cauliflower florets in a blender or food processor until it resembles rice-sized crumbles. (I use a Ninja blender, which offers high performance at a lower price tag than a vitamix.)
- Heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the shallots and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, for a few minutes until tender. Add the garlic and cook briefly.
- Add the cauliflower rice and stir to coat with oil. Cook time will depend on the size of the cauliflower crumbles, so cook until it has a tender but firm texture.
- Toss in the tamari (or aminos), vinegar, peas, salt, and pepper. The peas will take just about a minute to warm through. Then add in the mint and lemon juice. Top with chopped nuts, if desired, and enjoy.
I don’t like cauliflower rice, because to me, the whole point of using rice is its absorbancy factor, not its visual appearance. Placed beneath or stirred into any *wet* meal, cooked rice absorbs liquids that might otherwise be lost or wasted. And, since cooking mixed foodstuffs often results in diluted water-soluble vitamins and other nutrients, losing or optionally discarding such *run off* is definitely not wise, nor even desirable most times.
Being primarily vegetarian with a paleo bent (which, btw, *Pegan* does NOT address), I’ve found the cauli rice bandwagon limited and frankly, dishonest. Regardless of how versatile a vegetable cauliflower is, the way it is prepped, dressed or *doctored* NEVER approximates actual cooked rice.
I feel the same, you’re right
You are the first credible source I encountered years ago when investigating “pastured” eggs. I didn’t realize I was eating corn-eggs from inhumane hen farms. My food journey has continued with you as I believe in taking charge of my food preparation and sources. Because I value your opinion and truly wish for your good health, I urge you to read the Plant Paradox. Perhaps you will not agree on the findings and that is okay. But, since you have already improved/tweaked your diet to a healthy level, I believe you and your followers would benefit from just a little more tweaking. At least you would benefit from a slightly different perspective. Buon Appetito
You do not have to post this….