I’m back to Cauliflower in my never ending search for low calorie ingredients that are filling and have the potential to be delicious. This time I’m going to find out if the much read about Cauliflower Rice is actually any good or just another gimmick dish. I’m a little skeptical so I’m going for something with a lot of flavour first up – Nasi Goreng.
Nasi Goreng is Indonesia’s National dish, and is quite spicy. I’m confident the strong flavours will mask any of the inherent Cauliflower taste, and from everything I’ve read the texture is very similar to real rice, so I shouldn’t need to worry on that front.
I’ve had hit and miss results with Cauliflower before, I liked the Pizza crust recipe I made last year but my wife was not a fan. On the other hand, the Cauliflower Cumin fritters were really very good, and got the thumbs up from both of us – I must make them again soon. I’m hoping this recipe can become one I’m happy to repeat.
I found this recipe http://eatdrinkpaleo.com.au/paleo-nasi-goreng-indonesian-fried-rice-recipe/ and not only did it look good, it also sounded great. It’s the first time I’ve visited Irey’s website which focuses on Paleo recipes. Surprisingly quite a lot of Paleo recipes translate very well to tasty low calorie dishes with little or no modification. I’m sure to get quite a few inspirational recipes cruising her site.
The recipe becomes extremely low calorie by simply removing the meat (chicken and prawns)I substituted Ketup Manis for Tahini simply because I have it in the cupboard, which meant I didn’t need the Honey either. If you stick with the Tahini, this will also be Paleo.
Here is the recipe with my modifications – approx 80 calories per serve (serves 4), or 150 calories per serve if using the optional fried egg. This gives you plenty of scope to add meat protein if you desire, or have this as a healthy lunch, and spoil yourself for dinner.
Cauliflower Rice – Nasi Goreng style
- 1/2 medium white onion, peeled and diced
- 6 cups diced cauliflower (600 grams)
- 1 small carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 garlic clove, peeled and diced
- 2 tbsp Sambal Oelek
- 2 tbsp Ketup Manis
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- A little salt
- 4 eggs (optional)
- fresh coriander
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1. In a non-stick pan or wok, heat oil to medium and fry the egg until done to your liking – set aside
1. Add oil to a medium hot non-stick pan or Wok, add the onion and carrots & fry for 2-3 minutes, add garlic, fry for a further minute (add a splash of water if the vegetables are sticking). Turn the heat to high, add the Cauliflower rice and wet ingredients, cook for a further 6 – 8 minutes you need to allow the Cauliflower to crispen or brown slightly, then stir and rest so it has the opportunity to brown a bit more, you need a high heat.
4. Serve topped with chopped coriander.
5. If using egg, heat a spray of oil in a non-stick pan on medium heat and fry the egg until done to your liking.
I had this with fried egg, and some fresh chilli straight out of the Wok. It was good, but the Cauliflower was a little undercooked. I actually prefer raw cauliflower, so this wasn’t really a problem for me. The flavour and heat were there, but it did seem lacking in something, perhaps chicken or prawns and probably oil.
I’m preparing this in advance as a side for tomorrow’s dinner. It will get a little extra cooking, and I’ll be serving it with grilled chicken and I think a squeeze of fresh lime juice and a little more salt will liven the whole thing up.
Additionally, in the context of the fast diet, ie. restricting calorie intake to 5 or 600 per day, this recipe delivers on the all important “quantity” factor, not to be sniffed at on you diet day (as you well know)
All in all I will definitely make this again, with just a few tweaks, I think this will be in the excellent category.