Come Thanksgiving, one of my “must have” sides is roasted root veggies, which include butternut squash, sweet potatoes, and carrots. So in my book, the potato part of the meal is covered, right? Think about it, if it weren’t Turkey Day, would you ever make a meal that had two potato dishes?
I mean, I don’t know. Maybe you would, but I wouldn’t. And I’ll tell you why.
You see it’s NOT a “carb” thing. It’s a “full belly” thing. Let’s face it, it’s those starchy carbs that fill us up the fastest. I don’t know about you guys, but come Thanksgiving, I’m in it for the long haul and starting the meal with a combo of sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and stuffing is not a good formula to make it through a long day of eating.
So I try to find ways to create all of the flavors and textures that I’ve come to love on Thanksgiving, without creating the “full belly” feeling before I can even get to my pumpkin pie. (Because let’s be honest, most of us, full belly or not, are still gonna find a way to squeeze the pumpkin pie in, so why not try to do that without having the “full belly” feeling.)
Mashed Cauliflower takes the role of the mashed potatoes. They’re creamy, hearty and comforting just like your traditional mash. I mean, they even serve as the perfect bed for a ladle of gravy just like your traditional mash, but they are a lot lighter, leaving you with plenty of room for what’s to come.
You get the whole mashed potato experience with out the “gut bustin’, hand stuffed down your pants” feeling. Which means come time for the pumpkin pie, you can actually enjoy it!
(I’m tellin’ you guys, I’m always thinking…)
Now, I’ve tried Mashed Cauliflower many different ways and what I have learned to be the the secret ingredient behind really good mashed cauliflower is RAW ONION. A little raw onion takes this side dish from “Really Good” to “Crazy Good!” But beware… I’m a big flavor kind of girl, so I really like to taste the onion, but if you are not so into big flavors start out small with the onion and taste as you go.
Another option… swap the onion for it’s mild friend the scallion, that would be great too.
Bottom line: Whatever spin you like to put on your traditional mashed potatoes you can put on your Mashed Cauliflower. And if you’ve got any yummy twists, please be sure to share in the comments.
Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
- 1/2 of a medium onion, peeled and quartered*
- 1 clove of garlic, peeled
- 1 head of cauliflower, cored and roughly chopped
- 1 5.3 oz container plain, fat-free, Greek yogurt
- ¼ cup of Pecorino Romano cheese
- 2 tbsp. organic butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place cauliflower in a steam basket and steam for about eight minutes or until fork tender.
In a food processor, blend onions and garlic (be sure to get them really fine). Add cauliflower, Earth Balance, yogurt, cheese, salt and pepper and blend some more. You want the finished product to be like a thick puree.
Once everything comes together... taste it. Is it too thin? Add more cheese… A little bland? Another hit of salt. It’s in you’re hands… do your thing and remember… enjoy!!
Nutrients per serving: Calories: 124; Total Fat: 6.3g; Saturated Fat: 2.2g; Cholesterol: 4mg; Sodium: 168mg; Carbohydrate: 10.8g; Dietary Fiber: 4.1g; Sugars: 2.3g; Protein: 8.8g