Dinner Tonight: Cauliflower Purée

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I’ve been on a little cauliflower kick lately and just couldn’t turn down the possibility of what was essentially cauliflower mashed potatoes. Yep, it’s a holdout from the low-carb craze. But I didn’t care if it was healthy; I just wanted to see if it was worth it. I found the recipe in Ted Allen’s The Food You Want to Eat, and even he seems a little ashamed of it, regardless of the fact that it ended up being delicious.

And he’s right, the cauliflower puree never feels like a mashed potato rip-off. Instead it makes an earthier offering that’s perfect with lighter dishes like fish. To spruce up things Ted advises a few possible additions. He likes to add curry powder, English mustard, blue cheese or parmesan. I settled on the last item, adding huge grated handful at the very end. It won’t replace mashed potatoes on the Thanksgiving table, but might provide a lighter side to some grilling sessions.


  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese



  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Meanwhile, cut off the stems of the cauliflower and break into florets. Toss in a steamer basket atop the boiling water and steam for about 15 minutes.
  2. Remove the cauliflower and toss half of it in a blender along with 1/4 cup of the steaming water. Process into smooth. Add the other half of the cauliflower along with another 1/3 of cup of the steaming liquid. Process that batch until smooth.
  3. With the motor running add the butter, salt, and pepper. When incorporated, turn off the blender, and fold in the parmesan. Season with salt if it needs it, and serve.

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