Friday, February 17, 2012

Cauliflower Prawn Fried Rice & Cauliflower Sushi

I am a recent convert to the whole "cauliflower can be rice" way of thinking. I can't believe I have gone my whole life without ever having had cauliflower cooked this way.
It really is quite unbelieveably rice-like but without the carbs and starchiness.
When I made the above dish (Cauliflower Prawn Fried Rice) I couldn't believe it wasn't rice. The people that tasted it had no idea it was cauliflower.
I started my "eating healthier" plan in January and am still doing pretty good. Eating dishes like these ones makes me feel like I am totally indulging.
All it involves is taking a head of cauliflower and grating it using a hand grater or using the grating blade on a food processor (just be careful not to over-process)

Cauliflower Prawn Fried Rice

3 cups shredded cauliflower, not cooked
1 Tbsp oil
1/2 red onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp ginger, finely grated
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 Tbsp black bean sauce
1/3 cup frozen peas
1 cup chopped prawns, cooked

1 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp water (or chicken broth)
1 Tbsp Oyster Sauce

That's all you need :)

Place shredded cauliflower in a covered microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 4 minutes. Allow to rest with the cover in place for 5 minutes.
Whisk sauce ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Place 1 Tbsp oil in a heavy skillet on high heat. When just starting to smoke, add the onion, garlic, ginger, and carrot. Saute for about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the black bean sauce and cook another 2 - 3 minutes, until carrots are just tender. (Add a bit of water if mixture becomes too dry.)
Add the prawns and frozen peas. Cook until peas are done, about another 2 minutes.
Add the cauliflower and sauce and stir to combine.
Serve immediately.

That was the easy dish.
Sue and also made Cauliflower Sushi. It was really tasty and, again, if you weren't told you probably wouldn't have known it was cauliflower. The texture was a little different than regular sushi but the taste was spot-on.
Rolling the sushi and all that good stuff was incredibly easy....we had high hopes that this was going to be fantastic in every way....until it came time to try and slice them.
Then everything kind of fell apart. Literally.
Out of 3 rolls we only managed to salvage 1 1/2 rolls. The rest just crumbled and didn't stick together at all. Not that they went to waste....they tasted great....I just ate the residual mess from a bowl with a spoon.
It is hard to say where the trouble lay - Sue and I have never made sushi before - regular or otherwise. It may have been our method that was in need of improving.

Cauliflower Sushi

2 cups shredded cauliflower, not cooked
2 tsp rice vinegar
1 tsp sugar (or other sweetener)
1 pinch sea salt
1 tsp olive oil
sushi fillers - sliced cucumber, carrots, shredded crab meat mixed with a little mayo, avocado, etc...
Nori Sheets

Mix together vinegar, sugar, oil, and sea salt. Heat in microwave just to warm up.
Mix into cauliflower. You want the mixture to be dry but sticky.
Continue to prepare as you would regular sushi.

Here is a photo of it layed out on the Nori sheet. We used cucumber, carrot, and shredded imitation crab meat. We also made ones without the crab meat but with avocado.

See... so far so good. It was just that final cutting step that messed us up. We used a super sharp knife and everything but it still went kaflooey.

Oh well, we managed to get enough to bring some samples for others to try.
And, to get some photos so it looks like we knew what we were doing.

I used Fitday to figure out the nutritional info as best I could. (Of course there is a lot of variables that will change this so consider this an educated guess)

Regular sushi, per piece - 31 calories, 6.7 carbs, 0.6 protein
Cauliflower sushi, per piece - 10 calories, 2 carbs, 0.8 protein

Regular Fried Rice, 1 cup - 410 calories, 51 carbs, 26 protein
Cauliflower Fried Rice, 1 cup - 330 calories, 22 carbs, 27 protein

Pretty impressive, right? Especially if you are counting your carbs and calories.

I wanted to add this last photo as a warning to those of you who will be grating your cauliflower on a hand grater instead of using  the grating blade on a food processor.

It can get a little messy :)

Be sure to head over to Carole's Chatter for some great links!


  1. Diabetic friendly too! Both dishes were extremely yummy,I have to say the minute I smelt the stir fry my stomach started jumping up and down feed me feed me!! Another keeper!
    Thanks Joey

  2. Replies
    1. could probably try partially cooking it in a steamer or even just stir frying it in a fry pan until it softened.

  3. There is actually a special rice that is used to make sushi which is extra sticky and helps it all stay together. I am impressed though with using the cauliflower as rice!

  4. Jo and Sue - cauliflower sushi! Fantastic. Thanks for joining in the veggie fun over at Food on Friday. Cheers

  5. I don't use a microwave either. Would recommnent lightly steaming cauliflower in larger florette pieces then chopping it down either with a knife or in a processor. This will help prevent it getting to too wet.
    Really like caulilflower in lots of ways, Indian curry, Roasted, or this Thai Dish