I used to hate cauliflower rice so much that I never bothered with making it.
But since discovering how much better it is roasted, I have this newfound obsession with finding all the best flavor combinations for it.
I love, love, love rice with a mediterranean flare (which I still enjoy on occasion). Little sweet bursts of currants speckled throughout and a nutty flavor from pignolis.
In the directions, I’ve noted a little trick I use when making paella that helps to get the most out of that expensive saffron. It’ll pull a lot more flavor out to infuse into the rice when you roast it and it also helps it turn a really lovely golden color.
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Yields: 2-4 servings
½ tsp. saffron threads, crushed
1 tbsp. white wine (or red wine vinegar)
3 tbsp. avocado oil
½ tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. black pepper
1 large head of cauliflower
2 shallots, minced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
⅓ c. pine nuts
¼ c. dried currants
¼ c. chopped parsley
Heat the oven to 325F. Line a sheet pan with parchment or silpat mat.
Add the crushed saffron threads to the white wine in a small bowl. Swirl them around to coat and let them stand for 5 minutes to release their flavor. Stir in the avocado oil, sea salt, and black pepper.
Process the cauliflower florets through the shredding blade attachment of your food processor to create rice-shaped pieces. Toss the cauliflower in a large bowl with saffron mix. Spread the cauliflower evenly out onto the lined sheet pan and bake for 15-20 minutes (or 25-30 minutes if you want the caulirice to have some browned bits). Remove the pan from the oven and allow the caulirice to steam & cool for about 10 minutes.
While the cauliflower is roasting, light grease a skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, pine nuts, and currants and cook until the onions and pine nuts begin to turn golden, about 3-5 minutes.
Toss the shallot mix into the roasted caulirice, along with the chopped parsley. Serve warm.