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Move over, potatoes, and make way for cauliflower puree

The addition of silken tofu helps thicken Perfect Whipped Cauliflower Puree.

Associated Press

The addition of silken tofu helps thicken Perfect Whipped Cauliflower Puree.

Cauliflower entered the healthy food scene a few years ago as a clever solution to our low-carb-seeking-starch-loving woes. And with good reason: Cauliflower is incredibly versatile and can be used to replace simple carbs in endless recipes.

While health-conscious folks will likely continue to debate the benefits and shortfalls of low-carb-high-fat diets, we can all agree that adding more cruciferous vegetables into our diet is a good thing.

Cauliflower is very low in calories — about 25 calories per cup — and is a good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, B-6, folate and some minerals. Because of the fiber and protein, it's also filling.

Its mild flavor means it's an easy substitute for bland starches like rice or pasta, so parents can usually swap out some or all in recipes without kids turning up their nose.

Blending or mashing cauliflower is another excellent strategy. Add blended cooked cauliflower to sauces or soups for creamless creaminess and extra nutrition.

Mashed or pureed cauliflower may be the most celebrated swap of all, giving low-carb eaters an alternative to mashed potatoes. The drawback to many cauliflower puree recipes is two-fold: Often they rely on high quantities of butter or cream for flavor and texture. The second problem is that a cauliflower puree is looser than true mashed potatoes, which means it's nearly impossible to make a dent with a gravy ladle that will actually hold up.

My trick is simple: silken tofu. Just a little bit, along with chicken or vegetable stock, adds just enough thickening.

PERFECT WHIPPED CAULIFLOWER PUREE

1 large head of cauliflower (or 2 small heads)

3 cloves garlic, smashed

4 ounces firm lite silken tofu ( of a 12-ounce carton)

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

¼ cup chicken or vegetable broth, or more if needed

3 tablespoons half-and-half (or whole milk or sour cream)

Salt and pepper

Core cauliflower, cut into florets and boil or steam with garlic until very tender, about 15 minutes. Drain well and set aside. Place tofu into a food processor and process until creamy, about 30 seconds. Add cauliflower, garlic, butter, broth and half-and-half, processing until very creamy, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Makes 6 servings.

Nutrition information per serving: 57 calories (21 calories from fat), 2g fat (1g saturated, 0g trans fats), 6mg cholesterol, 131mg sodium, 6g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 2g sugar, 4g protein.

Move over, potatoes, and make way for cauliflower puree 11/23/16 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 23, 2016 12:32pm]
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