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Old 03-16-2007, 12:06 AM   #1
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Fresh versus frozen cauliflower?

I already admitted I'm not the world's best cook and I am really intimidated by using fresh cauliflower (I can't figure out how to cut it up!). So how much frozen cauliflower would equal a head of fresh cauliflower? Please help, there are a lot of yummy-sounding cauliflower recipes out there!
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Old 03-16-2007, 03:54 AM   #2
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A 10-oz. box of frozen cauliflower would be roughly equal to a small (4 inch) head.

Approximately 1 1/2 16-oz. bags of frozen cauliflower would give you close to the same yield as a medium (5 to 6 inch) head.

About 3 10-oz. boxes would give you roughly the yield you would get from a large (6 to 7 inch) head.

My experience has been that you don't have to worry about being terribly exact on the amount of cauliflower you use. A couple of ounces more or less won't really alter the quality of the dish you prepare. If you intend to try the Faux-tatoes, the most critical part is that you get the cauliflower as dry as possible after boiling or steaming it. If it's too wet, then the resulting dish will seem a bit mushy, or even soupy. It took me a few tries before I learned that! Yep, ate lots of unintended "cauliflower soup."

ETA: It's not difficult to work with fresh cauliflower. I recommend you put a small cutting board in your kitchen sink, because that helps contain the mess. Use a large, solid chef's knife to cut the head in half, then lay each half flat side down and cut it in half. Then you have 4 quarters to work with. Use the knife to cut out the core, which will be easy to see and get at on the quarters. Then you do whatever you want with the rest of the head. You can cut off the individual florets to use for dipping, or if necessary, you can cut the quarters into smaller sections to run through your food processor to make faux-rice. The first time you will feel a little intimidated, but once you've done it, you'll be an old hand at it.
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Last edited by Kisal; 03-16-2007 at 04:05 AM..
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Old 03-16-2007, 05:58 AM   #3
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Fresh cauliflower isn't hard to make. You just smash it. LOL! YUP you take the whole bloomin thing and bang it down on the counter or on a towel on the floor and with a couple of good pops on the stem the entire cauliflower just tumbles apart. You can do this with broccoli too. You can just toss the stem in the trash. No need for a knife at all.

Then take the pieces and you can break them in half with your hands if they are too large. Put them in a steamer basket with a bit of water in the sauce pan put the lid on and steam until tender. This works best for mock mashed potatoes as there isn't so much water that will make it runny. Put the softened pieces in the food processor add about half stick of butter and a tiny bit of cream or half and half and whir it till smooth. Be careful not to add to much cream or it can get runny quick. Salt and pepper to taste. You will be surprised how good this tastes.

Another way is to put the raw pieces in a food processor and put the grater tool on top and this makes mock rice and you can put this in the microwave for about 4 minutes to start and check to see if it is tender but don't cook too much or it can begin to brown. Add a bit of butter and use this for recipes that call for rice. You can also brown it now to make mock hashbrowns with a bit of bacon in it.

Not hard to do one bit. You can take out your aggression on these puppies. LOL
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Old 03-16-2007, 06:36 AM   #4
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Skeeter, Thanks for the tip on breaking up the cauliflower/broccoli. I usually buy frozen because I don't plan meals in advance and if I buy fresh it usually ends up in the freezer before I use it anyway (I only grocery shop once a month--we live so far out in the sticks). But if I see fresh on sale, this is good info to know.

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Old 03-16-2007, 08:23 AM   #5
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Thanks for the tips here. I really prefer fresh broccoli and cauliflower over frozen! When I use the fresh, I just cut right into the head and take out as many florets as I need.
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Old 03-16-2007, 09:44 AM   #6
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Ok, I'm going to try it again! My faux potatoes are always mushy so maybe I'll have better luck with thefresh cauliflower - thank you!
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Old 03-16-2007, 02:09 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doxielove View Post
Ok, I'm going to try it again! My faux potatoes are always mushy so maybe I'll have better luck with thefresh cauliflower - thank you!
The trick to keeping the faux-tatoes from being mushy is to drain the cauliflower really really well. When mine is fully cooked, I take a strainer with small holes and I kinda smash it up in the strainer with a spoon.. just try to get as much liquid out of the stuff as you can.
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Old 03-17-2007, 06:45 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by grrl74 View Post
The trick to keeping the faux-tatoes from being mushy is to drain the cauliflower really really well. When mine is fully cooked, I take a strainer with small holes and I kinda smash it up in the strainer with a spoon.. just try to get as much liquid out of the stuff as you can.
If you steam it there is no moisture to press out as they are just soft as the cauliflower isn't in the water at all. Frozen however is much more wetter than fresh.
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Old 03-17-2007, 08:17 AM   #9
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Wish I had a steamer. Any advice on how to steam without one.?
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Old 03-18-2007, 12:39 AM   #10
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You can put the food you want to steam in a covered, microwave-safe casserole dish, add just a tablespoonful or 2 of water, and nuke it. Start with 2 minutes on high, check for doneness, and nuke again until just crisp tender.

IIRC, cauliflower requires about 4 to 6 minutes in the average microwave, so adjust the tiime appropriately for the oven you own. Be careful not to overcook it.

Btw, if the veggies have water clinging to them from being washed, you might not have to add additional water. I almost never add additional water.

That's just one method, which happens to be my favorite. I'm sure there are other ways to do it.
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