In our new series, How to Eat Clean At Any Age, we’re bringing you not one, not two, but three different ways to cook our favorite ingredient of the season written by three different women on our team from different areas of the country (Sara our Marketing Manager in North Carolina in her 20s, Amie our founder in NYC in her 30s, and Jennifer, our Marketing Assistant in Arizona in her 40s). Our hope is that this column inspires you to see how easy it can be to truly eat clean at any age no matter where you live and what’s in your fridge.
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IT’S WHAT’S FOR DINNER.
Here’s how a group of hungry women on our team (who live all over the country) create a meal just for themselves with our star ingredient of the season: Cauliflower.
20’s // Sara-Marketing Manager
As a single 20 something, this simple way to make cauliflower is an absolute staple and it’s impossible to mess up. It’s inexpensive and takes less than 10 minutes from start to finish. The best part? You can make a ton of it upfront and use it in a bunch of recipes throughout the week such as tacos and salads.
THE COOKING TECHNIQUE: CAULIFLOWER RICE
STEP 1 // Cut the cauliflower into 1/2-inch florets using a sharp knife. Transfer the florets to a food processor (such as the one we love that’s listed below) and pulse until the cauliflower resembles a rice consistency.
STEP 2 // Transfer the cauliflower rice to a large skillet if you want it toasted (see below for directions) or serve it raw in your favorite salad recipe.
STEP 3 // Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
MAKE IT A MEAL // I like to take the cauliflower rice out of the food processor and transfer it to a large skillet where I toast it over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring often until it’s toasty and golden brown. After the cauliflower rice is toasted, I like to make a stir fry with peppers and onions to serve for a weeknight dinner. If I’m not in the mood for a stir fry, I will replace the cauliflower rice for couscous in a Mediterranean salad by adding slivered almonds and cherry tomatoes and freshly squeezed lemon juice. Whether you decide to toast the cauliflower rice or eat it raw, it’s perfect to add on top of a green salad or to pair with some roasted veggies or organic sliced chicken for a quick and easy lunch I can bring to work.
LET’S SERVE IT // When I’m tossing the cauliflower rice into a stir fry, I love to serve the dish warm because it tastes better right off the stove top. If the weather is warmer and I opt for the Mediterranean salad option, I’ll serve it at room temperature.
TOOLS TO USE // I use my favorite Kitchen Aid food processor, and a wooden cutting board is key for cutting the cauliflower florets.
30’s // Amie-Founder
Living in Manhattan, I often feel like one of the only people who cook. Trust me, it’s not a “thing” to cook for yourself here. My kitchen is not too shabby- I love it. It’s clean and remodeled so I enjoy spending time cooking, especially in the winter. My go-to vegetable is cauliflower, as many of you have seen from my Instagram Stories where I’ve made two simple sauces to drizzle over roasted cauliflower.
Roasting cauliflower is quite possibly the easiest way (and most delicious way) to serve it, in my opinion. It takes less than 5 minutes to whip up and pop into the oven and the taste is out-of-this-world. Tender, naturally sweet and so delicious for a side dish especially when the weather is chilly and you’re looking for a warm veggie to warm you up.
I like to get my cauliflower nice and toasty (meaning: I like the tips of the florets to be golden brown), which is when the real sweetness comes out to play.
THE COOKING TECHNIQUE: ROASTING
STEP 1 // Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare a large rimmed baking sheet or large roasting pan or ceramic baking dish with parchment paper.
STEP 2 // Cut the cauliflower into 1-inch florets using a sharp knife. Transfer the cauliflower florets to the prepared baking dish and drizzle with 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil and 1/2 tsp. sea salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Roast for 30-35 minute or until golden brown and very tender.
STEP 3 // Remove from the oven; set aside to cool for 5 minutes then serve warm. Store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
MAKE IT A MEAL // I love serving this roasted cauliflower with a handful of finely chopped fresh basil and a sprinkle of fresh lemon zest. It adds the perfect touch. If you’re looking to make this easy roasted cauliflower into a full meal, I suggest serving it with our Baked Chili Pasta Casserole or a piece of Poached Chicken (Check out our 5 Ways to Cook Chicken) with our simple Creamy Cashew Basil Sauce on top!
LET’S SERVE IT // Serve warm but trust me, cold leftovers are incredible tossed into a green salad!
TOOLS TO USE // I love using my sharp knife and wooden cutting board as well as my favorite ceramic baking dish. That’s all I need to make this recipe!
40’s+ // Jennifer-Marketing Assistant
Living in a suburb makes it easy for me to drive to the food store on a Sunday and stock up on my veggies, which is what I did this past Sunday. Cauliflower is on my list to purchase at least twice a month because my kids love it and it’s easy to make. I believe you really cannot mess up cauliflower, especially when you see how simple it can be to whip up whether you’re dining alone or for a family of four.
THE COOKING TECHNIQUE: SAUTEEING
STEP 1 // Slice a large head of cauliflower into 1/2 inch florets using a sharp knife on a cutting board. Discard the leaves and stem of the cauliflower.
STEP 2 // Pour 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Add the cauliflower florets, sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. sea salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper and cover. Cook for about 20-25 minutes or until the cauliflower is fork tender. Depending on how large your skillet is and how big your florets are, your cauliflower may need more time. That’s okay, just keep it covered and it will be done shortly.
STEP 3 // Remove the skillet from the stovetop and transfer the cauliflower to a serving platter and serve.
MAKE IT A MEAL // After I remove the skillet from the stovetop, I transfer the sauteed cauliflower into a large bowl and toss it with 2 cups cooked quinoa, 1-2 tsp. balsamic vinegar, 4 Tbsp. slivered almonds, 1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh mint and sea salt and pepper to taste. If my kids are really hungry, we’ll toss in some thinly sliced roasted organic chicken to make it heartier.
LET’S SERVE IT // My kids and husband like to serve this cold but I love it served warm, so however you want to serve it is up to you. I often add leftovers to a lettuce wrap the next day by selecting a few large leaves of Bibb lettuce and adding the sauteed cauliflower inside with 1/2 a ripe avocado and a sprinkle of sesame seeds, sea salt, and pepper and it’s delicious for an easy lunch when I don’t have time to make a sandwich.
TOOLS TO USE // I love using this large stainless steel skillet for sautéing. Also, I cannot live without my wooden cutting board because we do not use plastic in our home or our kitchen because as Amie has taught us, the plastic can leach into your food and we don’t want that!
STILL HUNGRY? For more of our anti-inflammatory recipes, check out our 3 Month Anti-Inflammatory Meal Plan, which is only available for a limited time through April.