Fried “Rice” Cauliflower

Whenever I have a big head of cauliflower hanging around, I like to “rice” it, a technique I learned by trial and error. What I found was that the shredded “riced” cauliflower can react a number of ways based on the technique. What I would like to impart in this recipe is how to prepare the cauliflower as a fried rice dish adding a lot of whatever you might have in the refrigerator or leftovers. I also like to make a little omelet and cut it into strips like in Chinese Fried Rice. I have also made a version akin to “Dirty Rice” using Cajun seasoning and chopped chicken livers.

Riced cauliflower

  • 1 large cauliflower (I used an orange variety)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons of Sesame Oil
  • ½-1 Cup Protein chopped, (I use whatever I have leftover- pork, beef or chicken)  
  • 1 cup assorted vegetables, carrots, peppers, celery all chopped
  • ½ cup frozen peas (optional)
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
“Rice” your entire head of cauliflower by shredding either in a food processor (recommended) or on a hand-held grater. This should be dry and fluffy not wet. If you have wet cauliflower, allow it to drain on a kitchen towel.

Heat a large heavy bottom pan on medium high heat and allow to get hot. Add the oil and then 1/3 of the cauliflower shreds. Stir fry this until it begins to brown, just a few minutes, add another third of the cauliflower and repeat. Add the final third and again get this and the rest of the cauliflower moving around by frequent stirring. At this point the cauliflower should still be separate “grains” and only slightly sticking together as white rice would do.

Move the “rice” to one side of the pan. Add the onion and stir frequently until the onions begin to soften. Stir the cauliflower and the onions together and add cumin seeds.  Add the sesame oil and allow to get hot. Stir fry your protein, not too long if it was already cooked if it is raw, cook until almost done. Move the protein on the cauliflower. Next, stir fry your vegetables in order of their cooking time. Carrots take longer so start with those, then celery, peppers and peas for example. Stir the whole pot together and reduce heat to low, cover and allow rest for 2 minutes. Meanwhile, add the slightly beaten egg to a skillet to make a thin little omelet, remove from pan and cut into strips then add it to the pot. Finally give the whole pot another stir then check for seasoning and add soy sauce or salt to taste. Fresh cilantro garnish and/or sliced green onions adds a brightness of flavor and appearance.