There is a real trend just now for vegetable spaghetti, rice and couscous. Go along the supermarket prepared veg isle and you will see products like these. They are cheap and easy to make, here is my favourite recipe for cauliflower rice.
This is absolutely delicious – a great low carbohydrate alternative to ordinary rice and it takes a fraction of the time to cook.
Another alternative is to blitz the cauliflower completely in the food processor and you have a couscous alternative. Perfect for people with gluten intolerances. Try mixing vegetables for a more colourful dish – broccoli, carrots, beetroot and butternut squash work well. Vegetables to avoid are mushrooms, and courgettes – they tend to go too juicy.
Vegetable ribbons and spaghetti are also delicious – make ribbons with a potato peeler, carrots and courgettes work best for this. All you have to do is keep peeling on one side of the vegetable, then steam, stir fry or simply pour boiling water over the ribbons in a collander. They are also delicious raw in salads.
For spaghetti, again they can be steamed, stir fried or blanched with boiling water as above, but try them marinated in lime or lemon juice for an hour to soften the fibers. Sweet potato is great done this way and if you don’t have a spiraliser, use a food processor and coarsely grate on the long side of the vegetable – not as attractive as spirals, but just as good.
Ingredients for vegetable rice
400g coarsely grated cauliflower
1 handful of raisins
1 handful of toasted flaked almonds
1 small red onion, finely sliced
1 small clove garlic – chopped
1 small red chilli – mild or hot to taste, optional
1/2 tsp ground cumin seed
Vegetable rice served with soy, maple glazed chicken
1/2 tsp ground coriander seed
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
juice of 1/2 lemon
4 tbsp coriander leaves
salt and pepper to taste.
In a large frying pan, stir fry the onion over medium heat until softened, add the garlic, chilli, cauliflower, raisins, almonds and spices.
Stir fry with a splash of water to heat through. When hot, remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and coriander leaves. Season to taste before serving.