It's as easy to make as classic mashed potatoes, but not as heavy. This lighter side dish is loaded with flavor with the addition of milk (or cream,) dried parmesan and pungent garlic. Cauliflower has an earthy smell and taste, and pairs well with cheese -- just check out my Baked Pasta with Cauliflower video recipe to see what I mean (click here.)
I got all the ingredients at my local 99c only Store, so the price is right. While cauliflower is not the cheapest vegetable, I often see it on sale at regular markets.
The preparation couldn't be easier: just seam the whole cauliflower for half an hour; roughly chop; add milk, parmesan and garlic; then mash.
Next time you see whole cauliflower (or packaged florets) on sale, do try out the Chintzy Chef's Garlic Parmesan Cauliflower Mash -- it would even make a palate pleasing side dish addition to your upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner table feasts.
Ingredients (3-4 servings)
- 1 whole cauliflower
- 1/2 cup milk - or cream, sour cream. Okay to use your favorite milk substitute.
- 1 tablespoon dried parmasan - and add as much as you like to taste. Okay to use any favorite cheese really; just add when cauliflower is hot so it melts.
- 1 teaspoon garlic - raw crushed, dried or granulated.
- 3 cups of water to seam cauliflower.
- No salt as dried parmesan is salty enough for me.
Add cauliflower to a large enough pot to cover. Add about 2-3 cups of water and cover pot. High heat until water boils, then reduce heat to low and steam half an hour. If you are using packaged cauliflower florets, you only need to steam 15 minutes (best to cook florets on a steamer rack.)
Done when cauliflower is easily pierced all over with a knife. Remove stem and leaves, if necessary. (You can season the stem and leaves and eat them or add to a salad.)
Place cooked cauliflower in a large bowl. Roughly chop with a knife.
Add half a cup of milk (or cream, sour cream, or dairy substitute.) Sprinkle in dried parmesan and garlic.
Use a potato masher to break down cooked cauliflower for a couple of minutes. It should be tender enough to mash like boiled potatoes.
I wouldn't use a blender or you'll get soup...hmmm that's another tasty sounding recipe. I think a food processor could work, just pulse to mashed potato consistency. You could also fine-chop the florets and mash with a large fork.
*Since cauliflower does not absorb liquid like a potato, the cream or milk will separate when sitting for a minute. So best to stir Cauliflower Mash just before serving (or drain some liquid off.) You can store in the refrigerator; and it heats up easily in the microwave.