Welcome back to Flawed yet Functional! It is the middle of June! Can you believe it?! Summer time is grilling time in our house, and most grilled food gets dressed in a bun before you eat it, right? Well, not in this Paleo, grain-free, gluten-free house! So what is a good replacement for the traditional yeasty bun? Roasted garlic mashed cauliflower works so well as a savory bed for any type of burger or steak. In fact, it looks really high-brow on the plate if you want to make your plates look fancy. 🙂 Want to know how to make it? Click through for this delicious, easy recipe!
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Why Mashed Cauliflower?
Mashed cauliflower is a delicious side dish on its own, but the soft mash consistency is also perfect for adding something to it! This mashed cauliflower with roasted garlic has a wonderful zing to it thanks to the slightly under-roasted garlic (see the next note) and lemon juice. A vegetable mash with a little bite to it is a perfect compliment to red meat.
In my experience, this dish is the best base for red meats like hamburgers, steak, or lamb chops. However, I put a pork burger on it with delicious results, and come to think of it, I even put sage pork chops on top! Ok, I stand corrected, just about any meat goes well with mashed cauliflower!
How to Roast Garlic
So I’m not going to explain how to roast garlic in general, but how to roast it perfectly for this recipe. Cauliflower is pretty bland by nature so it needs some dressing up. Slightly under-roasted garlic retains some of the sharp bite of garlic we all know and love which imparts a delightful zing to the dish.
So save some time in the kitchen and roast the garlic until just beginning to turn brown. The cloves should be able to be removed in one piece, not a pile of mush. I find this usually takes 25-30 minutes in a 375° oven.
Tips for Perfectly Mashed Cauliflower
When I first started on this gluten-free journey, I thought it was so weird that all the recipes I came across for mashed vegetables used a Vitamix or some other high powered blender. I grew up mashing potatoes in a stand mixer, so why couldn’t that be used for cauliflower?
Just in case your experience with mashed vegetables is limited to mashed potatoes, like mine was, let me explain why. Vegetables other than potatoes are fibrous. They have filaments or strings that need to be cut up in order to get that soft, smooth texture. If you use a stand mixer to mash cauliflower (1) it will likely be lumpy and (2) it will have filaments that do not get pureed. These combined will ruin the texture of the dish.
Do yourself a favor and use a blender!
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Substitutes or Additions
As with any recipe, it’s always good to know what else you could use, because you might want to make it with what you have on hand. Here are a few ingredients you could easily swap out.
The roasted garlic mashed cauliflower recipe below calls for plain almond yogurt, but really, any dairy-free yogurt would work fine. Make sure to select the plain version so you don’t have sweet fruit flavors shinning through! Coconut, soy, flax, or cashew yogurt are all good options. Check out this list for great dairy-free yogurt options!
Garlic Powder vs. Fresh Garlic
Not everyone has copious amounts of garlic lying around their house like I do, so feel free to substitute granulated garlic or pre-minced fresh garlic. Start with one teaspoon then taste and add more to your liking.
More or Different Herbs
This recipe for roasted garlic mashed cauliflower is fairly basic. Feel free to jazz it up with dried or fresh herbs. Rosemary, thyme, or sage would all be wonderful. For dried herbs, start with one half teaspoon then taste and adjust. For fresh herbs, begin with 1.5 teaspoons then taste and adjust.
Do you feel prepared now? You can make a delicious, anti-inflammatory vegetable mash that is not only delicious but takes your dinner plate to another level of fancy! Try roasted garlic mashed cauliflower with your favorite meat tonight!
Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower
You don't need buns for grilled meat! Try this savory cauliflower mash as a base for your hamburger, steak, lamp chops, or pork loin! It's Paleo, AIP (with adjustments), and Vegan friendly!
- 1 large head of cauliflower
- 1 bulb fresh garlic
- 1-1.5 tsp. sea salt
- fresh ground pepper to taste, omit for AIP
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil plus more for drizzling
- 2 Tbsp. plain almond milk yogurt
Preheat oven to 375°. Cut the top off the bulb of garlic. Place in the middle of a 12"x12" piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle with about 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Gather the edge of the foil up to touch each other above the bulb of garlic. Pinch foil together. Put in oven and roast for 25-30 minutes until just starting to brown and cloves still hold together.
Meanwhile, bring a 6 quart or larger dutch oven filled 3/4 with water to a boil. Rinse the cauliflower and chop into 6 large pieces. When the water is at a boil, add the cauliflower pieces and boil until soft, 8-10 minutes.
When the garlic is finished, allow to cool on the counter for a few minutes until able to be handled. Carefully remove each clove of garlic and add to a high powered blender, like a Vitamix. Add the remaining ingredients to the blender: sea salt, pepper (omit for AIP), lemon juice, olive oil, and almond milk yogurt.
When the cauliflower is soft, drain in a colander then add to the high powered blender. Puree until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
Tasting notes: If the cauliflower tastes flat or dull, it needs salt. Add more, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, until it comes alive!
One serving of Roasted Garlic Mashed Cauliflower has 6g of net carbohydrates.