Being a Trim Healthy Mama these days, I like to use cauliflower in low-carb dinners to replace potato or rice. I was excited to find cauliflower on sale at my local vege store the other day, so I bought three big ones and prepared them straight for the freezer.
I turned two of the cauliflowers into cauliflower rice, which I bagged up ready to make delicious low-carb, gluten-free cauliflower crust pizzas. If I had wanted, I could have bagged up smaller portions to pull out and cook for a quick dinner side to replace rice or mashed potato, but I chose not to do that this time.
With the other cauliflower I cut it into florets, blanched it and froze it. Florets can be cooked from frozen, simply reduce your normal fresh cauliflower cooking time by five minutes to allow for the blanching time.
I'll talk you through both freezer prepping methods with photos.
How to make and freeze cauliflower rice
|A big bowl of fluffy cauliflower rice.|
Step 1: Bring a few inches of salted water to boil in a large saucepan.
Step 2: Cut the cauliflower in half with a big knife, cut out the tough core and use your hands to break the cauliflower into medium-sized chunks.
Step 3: Soak the florets in a big bowl of cold water for a few minutes to remove dirt and bugs, then drain through a colander.
Step 4: Whiz half the cauliflower up in a food processor until it's in small rice-sized pieces but before it becomes a complete puree. Scrape cauliflower rice out with a spatula into a bowl to set aside for the moment and then whiz up the other cauliflower half in the food processor.
Step 5: Place all the cauliflower rice into the saucepan of boiling water and cook until the water comes back to the boil.
Step 6: Drain rice through a large sieve propped on top of a bowl for several minutes. Press down on the rice with a spatula to squeeze out as much water as possible. Cover rice with a tea towel and allow to cool for an hour or more.
Step 7: Spread the now cool cauliflower rice out flat in a large ziplock bag and try to squeeze out as much air as possible while sealing. Label with contents and date. This should keep in the freezer for a good few months, especially if there's no air in the bag.
Step 8: Thaw bag of cauliflower in the fridge overnight before the day you want to cook it, then simply refresh in a pot of salted boiling water for three to five minutes, or until cooked to your liking. Drain through a sieve before serving.
Step 1: Bring a BIG pot of water to the boil.
Step 2: While water is heating up, cut cauliflower in half and then cut out the hard core. Break cauliflower up into florets, about 2cm thick. Cut bigger pieces with a knife if necessary to get an even size across the florets.
Step 3: Soak cauliflower in a big bowl of cold water for a few minutes to remove dirt and bugs.
Step 4: Place cauliflower in the pot of boiling water and cook until the water comes back to the boil.
Step 5: Drain blanched cauliflower florets in a colander in the sink under cold running water to cool them down and prevent them from further cooking.
Step 6: Spread blanched florets in a single layer on a tray and freeze for a few hours, then transfer to a ziplock back. This will prevent the florets from clumping together when they're frozen.