results for cauliflower

Paleo (and Vegan) Cauliflower Rice

February 11, 2013

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Most people think of bacon and bloody steaks when they contemplate what it means to eat paleo. But while meat is a fundamental staple of the paleo diet, other than fish, it’s not something I eat. “Wait! What!? Then what do you eat?!” is the typical response to that. In short, I eat lots of vegetables, eggs, some fish, and lots of healthy fats like avocado, coconut and nuts.

Here is an example of what I eat – a bowl full of delicious vegetables. This recipe is modified from the Cauliflower “rice” pilaf that appears in Mel’s cookbook Well Fed. You can also refer to this recipe on her blog.

Vegan / Paleo Cauliflower “Rice” 
1 head of cauliflower
2 delicata squash (or 1 butternut squash)
1 onion
1 bunch of kale
1/2 cup sliced almonds 
1/2 cup raisins 
4 cloves garlic 
1″ fresh ginger 
1 tbs cumin
1 tbs cinnamon 
1 tsp fenugreek 
salt & pepper
2 tbs coconut oil
1 tbs olive oil 
1 bunch of cilantro
1-2 limes 

1. First you’ll want to roast your squash. Preheat your oven to 425F. Slice or dice your winter squash and in a large bowl toss the squash with 1 tbs of olive oil and a pinch of salt. Spread evenly over a baking pan and let it roast for 40-50 minutes (until it can easily be speared with a fork).

2. In the bowl of a food processor using your S blade mince the garlic cloves and ginger. Remove the garlic and ginger, set aside.

3. Now dice your onion – you can do this in the same food processor.

4. Heat a tablespoon of coconut oil in a large pan (I use my wok). Throw your onions, almonds and raisins together.

5. In the meantime, mix all your spices together, including the ginger and garlic. Once the onions are translucent in the wok shove everything to one side of the wok. Heat another tablespoon of coconut oil in the pan – once melted throw all your spices on that patch of oil. In about 30 seconds, or once the spices become fragrant, mix everything together.

6. Wash your cauliflower and cut the florets off the stem. (If you’re ever confused on how to cut or prep a certain veggie do a video search for it online. Jeremy and I are constantly learning new tricks on how to efficiently prep & cook by doing this). In the bowl of your food processor pulse the cauliflower until it has the consistency of rice. You may need to do this in two batches.

7. Add the cauliflower to the pan or wok and stir until the onion / spice mixture is thoroughly incorporated into the cauliflower. Stir occasionally (like once a minute). At this point you can add a splash of balsamic vinegar if you dig it.

8. This is a good time to wash and dry your kale. You can remove the leaves from the stems and rip or chop the leaves into smaller bit sized pieces. But don’t add it to the pan too soon!

9. After the cauliflower has been cooking for about 5 minutes add the roasted squash to the mix. And just before everything is good to go add your kale. You’ll need to add bits at a time until it’s wilted enough to all fit.

10. Wash and chop your cilantro. In a small bowl squeeze your limes on to the cilantro. Stir and incorporate it into your cauliflower “rice”.

Serves 6-8 as a side, or 4 as a main course.

Tofu and Cauliflower Fried "Rice"

February 27, 2012

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This dish was inspired by a few things:
1. On Saturday I ate way too many brownies and corn chips and pizza. I was feeling it on Sunday. This meal chock full of veggies made me feel a little more whole again.

2. Well Fed. Sometimes I forget that this isn’t just a pretty book I designed but an actual cookbook. With really great recipes. This recipe is Pork Fried Rice – I just substituted tofu* for pork and threw some Best Stir Fry Sauce Ever (p. 51 in Well Fed) in there. What’s especially cool about this recipe is the added dose of veggies by substituting rice with cauliflower.

(*NOTE: The tofu takes this recipe out of the Paleo category but it is vegan. And delicious.)

3. I watched an episode of “America’s Worst Cooks” where they made a meal using tofu (which one contestant kept calling “tufo”) and green onions cut on the bias. Afterwards got all riled up & competitive and felt the need to cook with tofu and green onions. Which is silly because these ingredients are go-to staples that I could cook with my eyes closed.

4. I’ve been bored with the same ol’ veggies I’ve been cooking lately (lots of winter squash, carrots, and sweet potatoes). So I thought I’d change things up a little with cabbage and bok choy. It made me so happy to pull myself out of a food rut.

Indian spiced cauliflower and potatoes / Double Broccoli Quinoa

June 4, 2010

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I’ve been craving Indian food like crazy lately. I started the week of with lentil patties and made Indian spiced cauliflower and potatoes (with onion, fresh peas and brown basmati rice) just days later for my weekly friend dinner. I’m about to have it for leftovers just as soon as I wrap up this post.

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My dear friend, Ashley, has been raving about this double broccoli quinoa recipe over at 101 Cookbooks. I had a bunch of broccoli from the farmer’s market to use up so I thought I’d try it out. I used an entire bulb of fresh (from the ground) garlic in this one and it was VERY strong – but typically when I just use a clove or two of the fresh stuff I can hardly taste it. I also substituted pine nuts for the almonds and left out the heavy cream. I added an egg on top for a little extra protein. It was delicious.

I’m really loving how eating locally is forcing me to expand my horizons when it comes to cooking – I’m getting to try so many new (and healthy) recipes. And while my own garden isn’t producing a whole lot yet it’s given me a new appreciation for what these local farmers are doing to get pesticide-free food to my table. It breaks my heart when I let a veggie go bad in the fridge.

As always, ingredients highlighted in green are local.

My Third Whole30

August 11, 2014

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After months of declaring that I’m going to do another Whole30 I’m finally doing another Whole30. If you’re not familiar with the Whole30 it’s basically a paleo way of eating with very clear boundaries for thirty days. I eat seafood but no other meat so for thirty days I’m eating lots of vegetables, eggs, fish, fruit, nuts, and healthy fats like coconut and olive oil. What I’m not eating is sugar, alcohol, dairy, grains, and legumes.

Why do a Whole30? My first Whole30 happened after a month of indulging on lots of bread, wine, and cheese in Eastern Europe. My second Whole30 happened after a winter of celebrating all the holidays with lots of caramel corn, brownies, cookies, and wine. My Whole30 results were amazing – my skin was glowing, I never felt bloated, and I had some hormonal stuff that seemed to sort itself out. But even so, after my second Whole30 I kind of decided I never needed to do another Whole30 again. That I was capable of practicing balance and moderation by eating paleo 90% of the time but still enjoy treats with moderation and mindfulness. Oh and then I got pregnant – and while I didn’t throw paleo eating out the window I listened when my body made loud, almost childlike demands for “YOGURT! OATS! IN MY FACE! NOW!”

So why another Whole30? This postpartum Whole30 is an attempt to get some inflammation in my body down and my stress hormones under control. In the mornings when I step out of bed my whole body hurts – I hobble to the kitchen for my heaping bowl of morning oats like a grandma. In the evenings I feel bloated and very-not-sexy. Also, I’m doing another Whole30 because it turns out I’m not so great at moderation. I spend a lot of mental energy discerning whether a day was good enough to celebrate with an entire bar of dark chocolate (or maybe just 2 pieces? Or 3. No, 4… see!) or hard enough to wind down with a well-deserved pint of dark oatmeal stout.

Furthermore, I’ve spent the last year letting cravings dictate what I eat – and that was completely valid given my context. My previous Whole30s actually allowed me to understand my pregnancy cravings and actually listen to my body. So when my body told me to eat oats in my last trimester of pregnancy I almost felt ashamed! Like I was betraying my paleo way of life. Little did I know oats help boost milk production so it’s my paleo way of eating no grains that allowed me to listen when my body started craving them. That said, with the extra stress my body is under (lack of sleep, hitting the gym hard, breastfeeding, and general stress) I’m craving lots of sugar and entire loafs of bread. And I’m feeling it.

What’s different about this Whole30? The biggest difference is that because I was already eating mostly paleo (aside from the morning oats, evening chocolate, and occasional glass of beer) going that extra 10% isn’t so hard. Attitude-wise I  have a lot more ownership over my choice to do this. I’m not a dramatic victim of the Whole30 (which is what it can feel like at times). And at just little over a week into it I’m learning that my relationship with food will always be a journey and ongoing learning experience that will need to be tweaked according to whatever factors are playing into my overall health. That said, this Whole30 is allowing me to take an objective look at where I’ve been, where I’m at, and where I want to go with the things I consume and whether they make me more or less healthy.

Okay but what am I actually eating? Every morning I have sweet potato hash browns seasoned with cumin, cinnamon, and salt topped with two eggs sunny side up. I have two cups of tea with homemade hemp milk. For lunch I usually have leftovers from last night’s dinner which is typically some sort of fish and veggie dish like cauliflower rice. For snacks I eat bananas smeared with almond butter, a handful of grapes, and cucumber sticks with smoked salmon and boiled eggs. If I’m craving something sweet I’ll bake some diced apples topped with dates, nuts, and cinnamon. Or I’ll snack on some dried goji berries. That’s pretty much it!

I’ve also found it much easier to eat out on this Whole30 – I know how to modify my order to make it Paleo and without annoying the waiter too much. (Local OKC friends – The Wedge’s antipasto platter without cheese and fish and veggies at Kitchen No. 324 are safe bets.)

Should you do a Whole30? Anytime I share that I’m doing a Whole30 I get a slew of texts and direct messages saying things like “I want to do a Whole30. But I don’t know how I’m going to live without _______.” If you want to try a Whole30 just go for it. Maybe just try living without black beans or cream in your coffee or whatever for 30 days – one day at a time – and see how you do. Or don’t  – just because everyone and their dog is doing a #whole30 doesn’t mean you have to.

 

Full disclosure: Whole30 and Whole9 Life are a client of mine but I was in no way compensated for this post and all opinions are my own. I was working with Melissa and Dallas Hartwig for over a year before I tried a Whole30 and it really did change my outlook on food.

Whole 30 | Day 23

August 16, 2012

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When I first embarked on the Whole30 I would read tweets and blog posts from people talking about being on Day 23 and LOVING it!!! Meanwhile, I was on Day 4 and going through some pretty emotional refined carb and wine withdrawals. I was feeling like I would never reach Day 23. Ever. That time would stand still and I would be craving cupcakes forever.

But here I am. Day 23. And I love how I feel but I’m not triple exclamation mark loving everything about the Whole30. In fact, I have become pretty neutral about the whole thing. When I think about cravings or wine, or anything else I think I’d love to have a taste of, it’s as if I’m viewing those emotions from the 3rd person – from the outside looking in. Being this emotionally detached from my food has been kind of a blessing and a curse. I mentioned in my last Whole30 post that my outlook on food has shifted from this thing of desire and cravings to a means of nourishment. Cultural and social context has been all but stripped from my meals – and I was feeling a little bit sad about it.

But this tuna steak I pan seared last Friday was a game changer. It was straight up sexy. We’re talking a mouthgasm delivered straight to my tastebuds sexy. After my first bite (standing over the kitchen counter) I insisted that we sit at the dining room table (versus the breakfast nook or couch) to savor our meal. After the second bite I considered lighting a candle to celebrate my dinner plate getting its groove back – but forget about it – I didn’t want to let that tuna steak out of my sight.

It comes down to the sauce. If I’m learning anything in the kitchen from this Whole30 experiment is that it always comes down to the sauce. So even if you don’t eat fish – I beg of you – pan sear a block of tofu and pour this sauce on top. You can thank me later.

I’m not going to post my food & workout log this week. Mostly because it pretty much looks identical to the past two weeks. Plus this tuna steak. And some zucchini pad thai – also a game changer – that I’ll be posting next week.

So here’s the pan seared tuna recipe. I found it here – the top hit when I Googled “pan seared tuna steak”.

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Cilantro and Lime Tuna Steak
2 big handfuls fresh cilantro leaves, finely chopped
1 jalapeno, sliced
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, grated
2-3 limes, juiced
2 tablespoons coconut aminos (or soy sauce)
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 (8-12 ounce) block sushi-quality tuna
1 ripe avocado, halved, peeled, pitted, and sliced

In a mixing bowl, combine the cilantro, jalapeno, ginger, garlic, lime juice, coconut aminos, salt, pepper, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Stir the ingredients together until well incorporated.

Place a skillet over medium-high heat and coat with the remaining 2 tablespoons of coconut oil. Season the tuna generously with salt and pepper. Lay the tuna in the hot oil and sear for 1 minute on each side to form a slight crust. Pour 1/2 of the cilantro mixture into the pan to coat the fish. Serve the seared tuna with the sliced avocado and the remaining cilantro sauce drizzled over the whole plate.

Go here for the recipe for the cauliflowered rice pilaf I served with it (or buy Well Fed).

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