Friday, October 24, 2014

Recipe: Cauliflower Mash

Sorry folks, no What I Read This Week entry as we're gearing up for a trip to Ohio and I have to focus on cleaning the apartment, doing laundry, and packing. I am, however, taking the time to post a recipe since many friends have been asking for it and it's quite an easy one to type out.

casacaudill beef brisket

Last night I made BBQ beef brisket and served it over a pile of cauliflower mash. I've been making the mash since the days we were eating Paleo, and it's become a great base to many dishes that have rich, succulent sauces.

First, a note on the BBQ brisket. The recipe I found called for it to be cooked in a dutch oven, sans lid, for 6-8 hours at 275 degrees. I'm not going to link to that recipe because we found a bunch of things "wrong" with it that we will change if we ever decide to make brisket again. For starters, I'd recommend either keeping the lid on for 4-6 hours or cooking it in a slow cooker/crock pot. The meat - a beautiful piece of grass fed, grass finished brisket from Prather Ranch at the Grand Lake Farmers Market around the corner from our house - turned out a bit dryer than we would have liked, although it did absorb a lot of the flavor from the homemade BBQ sauce. Also, the BBQ sauce cooked down a lot, both burning to the pan, and requiring that I add a lot of water. I was surprised to see that happen even at such a low temperature.

casacaudill homemade BBQ sauce casacaudill beef brisket

Now, on to the cauliflower mash. It's really quite simple.

Cut up a head of cauliflower, making sure to remove as much of the stems as possible (it's super fibrous and the more you include in your mash, the lumpier it will be. Once your cauliflower is cut up, place it in a pot of boiling water for 15 minutes (or until soft). Remove from the water and place in a food processor like a Cuisinart. As I've mentioned before, we love our Cuisinart Elite food processor. Before blending, add salt, pepper, shredded cheese (we tend to use the quattro formaggio blend from Trader Joe's since we often have leftovers from our homemade pizza), and cream or butter. Some people use both, I use whatever we have on hand. I won't tell you how much to use since it's all based on personal preference. Sometimes when we want it super cheesy, we throw in half a bag and no cream/butter. Last night we only had about 3/4 cup so that's what we used in conjunction with about 1/2 cup of cream. To reduce the fact, you could substitute the cream for stock. I imagine it'd be delicious that way too, depending on what meat you're serving it with. (Note to self: try it with beef consomme the next time you make it with braised short ribs.) Blend until it reaches your desired consistency and then serve. We like it fairly creamy so I run the food processor for 30-45 seconds. If you want it chunkier, I'd recommend the pulse function.

And that's it. You're done.

casacaudill brisket with cauliflower mash