The thing I love about pilafs is that you can add in a lot of good healthy ingredients to them – think immune boosting onions, garlic, kale and spices.
The thing I love even more about using cauliflower as the “grain” is that it gives you the illusion of a carb without the calories and blood sugar spike. Nothing wrong with whole grains, but good to mix things up every once in a while.
When I talk about pilafs I’m not talking about something your mom made in the 70’s with white rice and a chicken flavored bouillon cube. Pilafs are an excuse to add in more vegetables and goodness into your meal.
In the age of Corona, I had two bags of frozen riced cauliflower in my freezer. Normally, if I am going to make a pilaf with cauliflower I like to use fresh so I can “rice” it in my food processor. It’s just more sturdy and fresh tasting. Since I had no fresh cauliflower on hand, and was not about to just skip on over to the store, this was easy and convenient.
I served this pilaf with grilled swordfish and my Pineapple Cilantro Slaw – a delectable combination of flavors. This pilaf will definitely be in my Corona cooking rotation, and hopefully for years to come.
Cauliflower Rice Pilaf with Turmeric and Curry
Makes 4-6 servings
2 10-ounce bags frozen riced cauliflower, or 1 large head fresh cauliflower
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped fine
1/2 teaspoon each coarse salt and pepper
1 large clove garlic, minced or pressed
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon ground curry powder
1 small bunch of kale (you can use 1 cup frozen and feel free to use other greens), stems removed and chopped
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/3 cup toasted pumpkin seeds, totally optional but gives it nice texture
- Prep the cauliflower: if using fresh, remove the inner core and cut off the florets. Add the florets to a food processor (you might need to do this in two steps) and pulse until they are the consistency of rice. Set aside.
- In a large saute pan, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add in the onion with the salt and pepper and sauté for 3 minutes, until soft. Add in the garlic, turmeric and curry powder and stir continuously for 30 seconds.
- Add in the cauliflower and incorporate into the onion mixture. Saute for 5 minutes until beginning to soften.
- Next, add the chopped kale (you might have to do this in batches to let it wilt down), and continue cooking until softened.
- Turn off the heat and taste, you might need to add in a little more salt. Sprinkle with the lemon juice and pumpkin seeds if using and serve.