When most people think of creamy sauces, they usually imagine dairy milk, yoghurt or cream as an essential ingredient for a lip-lickin’, smooth buttery result. Seldom do people imagine… erm, cauliflower!
Make the main sauce:
- Chop the cauliflower and cook in a large saucepan (with lid) along with the coconut milk (no water). Bring to the boil and then turn down to a simmer.
- Take the cardamom seeds out of the pods and chop them with a knife. Chop or crush them as finely as you can (within reason) to unleash their flavour. Toss in the pan.
- Peel and crush the garlic cloves and add to the pan along with the salt. Note: If you are using the oven at the same time, roast the garlic first to really bring out the flavour (it’s not essential at all, but it does add a bit of culinary magic if you can).
- Simmer for 20 minutes or until you can easily pierce the cauliflower with a fork. Then blend everything together until creamy, using a jug blender or hand blender.
- Pour over pasta or noodles and enjoy.
Alternative version 1: “Roasted Pepper & Garlic Sauce”
- Leave out cardamom from the original recipe.
- Use 1 sweet pepper and 3 cloves of garlic.
- Roast the sweet pepper and garlic in a hot oven… To do this, keep the garlic in its skin and place on an oven tray along with the pepper and place in a pre-heated oven (gas mark 7/425°C/220°F should work fine). Roast garlic for up to 10 minutes and the pepper for about 15-20 minutes (or until the pepper is easy to pierce). No need to let the pepper char.
- It’s best to wait until the garlic cools down a little before you pop it out of it’s skin. Gently chop off the top; then squeeze out the fleshy garlic and place in a jug ready to blend with everything else.
- Blend in the pepper and garlic with the original recipe and enjoy either creamy smooth or rustic.
Alternative version 2: “Mushroom Sauce”
- Sautee 200g of mushrooms and one medium sized onion in coconut oil and then add to the blended sauce for a chunky mushroom sauce or delicious soup.
Alternative version 3: “Scheezy Sauce”
- Add two heaped tablespoons of nutritional yeast extract for a scheezy sauce.
Alternative version 4: “Super Easy Stock Cube Sauce”
- Leave out the cardamom and sea salt and add a couple of vegan stock cubes for a super easy immediate infusion of flavour.
Alternative version 5: “Totally Coconut Sauce”
- Add up to 100g of creamed coconut block or up to 200g of coconut cream to the mix before blending – for a sensational infusion of coconut.
And just in case that’s not enough…
“Delicious Dreamy Cauliflower Soup”
The amazing thing is that this all of the above versions can be enjoyed on their own as soup. Blend and eat as it is or add some more of your favourite vegetables once cooked.
The limit really is your imagination
This versatile, culinary delight can be used for lasagne sauce, in vegetable bakes or with veggies as sauce to serve on top of rice. Maybe you can dream up a favourite version of your own!