Can we take a moment to fixate on the colour of this…
I recently served a side dish of cauliflower rice at a dinner we were hosting. One of our guests commented after that she was at first bemused (“Wait, what? Cauliflower rice? You must mean cauliflower with rice…?), then delighted by an exciting new flavour and texture (“This is one of the best things I’ve ever tasted!”), followed finally by gratitude for the ease with which the cauliflower was digested (“It didn’t leave me feeling heavy, full, or uncomfortable as rice often does.”) Music to my ears, I tell you.
Anyway, cauliflower is just so incredibly wonderfully versatile. Once it’s cooked, much of its sulfur-rich pungency dissipates, and you are left with a beautiful tabula rasa of flavour profile possibilities.
But back to the benefit of sulfur-rich cruciferous vegetables. We need sulfur. Sulfur is pretty darn important in a number of physiological processes, as Mark Sisson points out. And during digestion sulfur-rich vegetables, like cauliflower, break down into compounds called indoles and isothiocyanates, currently studied for possible anti-cancer effects.
Aside from being good for us, cauliflower really is delish. I kept this cauli-rice pilaf simple in order to let the fresh mint and citrus shine as well as to honour the little sweet bites of dried apricot.
Why not serve this dish at your next dinner party and watch your guests delight at such yummy and nutritious food?
Happy nomming, peeps!
Cauli-Rice Pilaf with Apricot & Mint (AIP, Paleo, SCD, Whole30)
Recipe type: Side Dish / Vegetables
- 1 head cauliflower, riced
- 2 tbsp. EVOO
- ½ c red onion, diced
- 2-3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ c carrot, diced
- ½ c celery, diced
- zest of one lemon
- juice of half a lemon
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp. fresh mint, chopped
- 3-4 dried apricots, chopped (Be sure to use tree-ripened, dried, and unsulfured.)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Chop the cauliflower into florets. Wash and then rice in a food processor.
- Spread the riced cauliflower onto the parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Put in the oven and bake for a total of 30 minutes, turning at the half way point.
- In the meantime, heat the EVOO in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté until translucent (around 5-8 minutes).
- Add the carrot and celery to the skillet. Sauté for another 5-8 minutes.
- Remove the roasted cauliflower rice from the oven and add to the skillet along with the other vegetables. (I like to work quickly from this point so that the cauliflower rice doesn't get soggy.)
- Add the lemon zest and juice, sea salt, apple cider vinegar, mint, and chopped dried apricots.
- Toss and serve! This dish also chills well.