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5 Best Recipes for Cauliflower

There is good reason why cauliflower has been gaining in popularity in recent years. This member of the cruciferous family – which also includes broccoli, cabbage and kale – is not only low in calories and carbohydrates, but is rich in vitamins and minerals and also in important antioxidants and other plant-based compounds that have been proven to reduce the risk of serious conditions like heart disease and cancer.

The great news is that cauliflower, apart from being incredibly healthy, is also incredibly versatile and can be a great addition to casseroles, soups, curries, side dishes or even hearty vegetarian entrees. The recipes below are all vastly different and showcase the many uses this superfood can be put to in the kitchen.

Sour Cream and Chive Mashed Cauliflower

For diabetics watching their carbs or those following low-carb diets, this is a perfect substitute for traditional mashed potatoes, with the sour cream and chives adding a great flavor to the dish. Serve it tonight – chances are your family won’t even notice the difference!

Ingredients

1 whole head cauliflower, peeled and chopped, stem discarded

½ cup low-fat milk

½ cup low-fat sour cream

2-3 tablespoons fresh chives, diced

1 tablespoon butter

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Boil the cauliflower in a medium pan until soft, around 15-20 minutes.  Drain it very well, making sure all the excess water is gone, then put into blender.  Add the next five ingredients.  Puree until the cauliflower is the consistency of mashed potatoes.  Serve immediately.

Cheesy Baked Cauliflower

This creamy comfort food dish is reminiscent of macaroni and cheese but again without all the carbohydrates from traditional pasta.  For different variations, peas or chopped broccoli can be added to this dish; you can also add a dash of red pepper if you want to spice things up!

Ingredients

1 whole head cauliflower, peeled, stem discarded, chopped coarsely

1 cup low fat milk

½ block Philadelphia cream cheese

1 cup low-fat shredded cheddar cheese

1 tablespoon butter

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Boil cauliflower in a medium pan until vegetable is soft, about 15-20 minutes. Drain well and arrange in bottom of lightly sprayed 13×9 baking dish.  Then, in medium saucepan, add milk and cream cheese and heat slowly until the cream cheese is melted and the sauce is creamy; add the cheddar cheese and butter and stir constantly until this has melted to make a fairly thick sauce. Pour the cheese sauce over the cauliflower and bake at 350 degrees for 40 to 45 minutes until golden brown and firm.

Cauliflower “Steaks”

The Internet has many different versions of this vegetarian “steak” recipe.  This is one of the more basic variations, but still gives a rich, meaty flavor to this great and healthy entrée.  It pairs well with a rice pilaf and green beans.

1 whole head cauliflower, peeled and stem discarded

2-3 tablespoons olive oil

1-2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 clove garlic, very finely minced

Dash of red pepper

Cut cauliflower lengthwise into approximately 1-inch thick “steaks” (an average head of cauliflower will yield 4-6 of these), then set aside.  In a small bowl, whisk together the next four ingredients. Using  a baster, generously coat both sides of the cauliflower with the olive oil mixture, then lay them on a cookie sheet or shallow baking dish and bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes, turning them over half-way through the baking time.

Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup

This rich vegetable soup is great for cold weather and, like the cauliflower bake, is classic comfort food.  It is wonderful when served with whole wheat crackers or crusty, old-fashioned rolls.

Ingredients

1 whole head cauliflower, peeled and chopped coarsely, stem discarded

1 whole head broccoli, chopped coarsely, stem discarded

1 cup cream

2 cups milk

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Boil broccoli and cauliflower in a large saucepan until tender, about 15-20 minutes. Drain well, then place in blender.  Add the two cups milk and puree until smooth.  Return the mixture to the saucepan and warm up slowly, adding cream and cheese as well as the salt and pepper to taste.  Stir constantly until the cheese has melted and the soup is smooth. Serve hot.

Curried Cauliflower over Brown Rice

The coconut milk and curry paste lend an exotic flavor to this Indian-inspired dish which makes an excellent lunch or light dinner; it can be paired with Naan bread and classic Indian appetizers like samosas for a full and elegant meal.

Ingredients

1 whole head cauliflower, peeled and coarsely chopped, stem discarded

1 red onions, peeled and chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

1 can coconut milk

1-2 tablespoons curry paste of choice

2 cups cooked brown rice

Directions

Prepare rice as directed. While rice is cooking, sauté the cauliflower, red onion and garlic in the olive oil, covering pan with lid and stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft.  In the meantime, in a small bowl, whisk coconut milk and curry paste together until smooth, then add this mixture and peas to the cauliflower-vegetable mixture and serve over brown rice.

In short, the uses for this vegetable are virtually endless; you are only limited by your imagination in the kitchen!  And there are so many advantages: it is perfect to use for those who are following Atkins-style or other low-carb diets and is good for diabetics due to the fact that it has a low glycemic index and won’t cause a spike in blood sugar levels.  It is rich in a number of important nutrients, as well as having both fiber and protein to help balance out a meal.  It is also a relatively inexpensive vegetable and can easily fit into virtually any budget.

Mostly importantly, though, it can be used in incredibly delicious recipes like those given above!
Source-goweloveit.info