Fried rice without rice?! WHAT?! That was exactly my reaction when I first saw this recipe in Nom Nom Paleo Food for Humans by my friends Michelle Tam and Henry Fong.
Being the super rice geek that I am:
I had to try the Paleo version of fried rice without the rice. So I guess that makes it Fried Cauliflower, which sounds like a dish not like this. So I’m keeping the name Cauliflower Fried Rice.
Truthfully, I hadn’t even planned on doing any research on the Paleo diet – any diet that makes me give up my bread, glorious bread doesn’t interest me. However – after flipping through the volumous Nom Nom Paleo Cookbook, and bookmarking 8 recipes I must try TODAY (we ended up making 3 of them in one day) – I had to know more.
Here’s my conclusion:
If you’re a Paleo, get this book.
If you’re not a Paleo, get this book.
The fad diet name aside, Nom Nom Paleo by Michelle Tam and Henry Fong is just full of good food that’s good for you. Nothing processed. Nothing “refined”, nothing “enriched with.”
Here are the list of my top choices from the book:
10 minute Sriracha (we made this!)
Whole Roasted Fish (stuff ‘em with lemons and herbs)
Mussels in Curry Broth (uses Indian curry powder)
Kabob Koobideh (I love saying this!)
Crispy Roast Pork Belly (need i say more?)
This rice. Errr….this “rice” – was bacon-tastic. The process was so easy that it was even faster than cooking rice. Cauliflower is grated on the large holes of a box grater. Even the stem gets grated too.
Stir fry with bacon and whatever vegetables you want. Fifteen minutes later, you’ve got Paleo Cauliflower Bacon Fried Rice.
Here’s how to make it:
Cauliflower Fried Rice with Bacon Video Recipe
The recipe is super-easy – 15 minutes total. Below the recipe is a crazy list of options (CAN YOU TELL I’M HUNGRY?!)
Cauliflower Fried Rice Options
When stir-frying, timing is everything. Overcooked spinach is mushy and undercooked chicken is not good. I’ll divide these options according to Steps 1 – 4 in the recipe.
STEP 1 OPTIONS:
Along with the bacon, you can add more bacon. Just kidding 🙂
- You can add in diced Chinese Lap Cheong (Chinese sausage) which is, um, another form of bacon.
- Egg – once the bacon gets a good headstart, push it to one side of the pan. Crack an egg into an open spot. Scramble. Remove egg once it’s cooked (leave the bacon in the pan) and put scrambled egg aside. You’ll add it back in to the pan during step 4. This prevents the egg from overcooking – and from coating and mushy-ing up all the vegetables while they cook.
STEP 2 OPTIONS:
Along with the onion, you can add in ground beef, pork, turkey, chicken, buffalo. Throw in minced garlic at the very end of step 2.
How about different vegetables?
- Diced (like the size of frozen diced carrot) – zucchini, squash, red onion, bell peppers, mushrooms of all kinds
- Halved at diagonal – sugar peas, snap peas
- Chopped – cabbage, kale, napa cabbage, green onion, bok choy
- Matchstick – fresh carrot, broccoli stem (they sell in packages called “broccoli slaw”)
- Frozen – any diced veg or bean like edamame. Throw it in the pan while frozen, they’ll thaw out and be perfect once you’re done cooking. There’s nothing worse than mushy peas and carrots due to overcooking.
Or more meat/seafood?
- Diced cooked ham, smoked turkey (anything already cooked)
- Raw shrimp – shell ‘em and then give ‘em a nice rough chop.
- Diced salmon
STEP 3 OPTIONS:
Along with adding the cauliflower, you can add in:
- Chopped fresh spinach leaves or any other delicate leafy greens that don’t require a lot of cooking.
- Cooked shrimp (the kind you use for cocktail shrimp) – pinch tails off, rough chop.
- Chopped up – leftover rotisserie chicken
STEP 4 OPTIONS:
As a substitute for Bragg’s Amino:
- Coconut Amino, fish sauce or soy sauce. For non-Paleo peeps, try a tablespoon of oyster sauce for a slightly sweet/salty combo.
- Top it off with chopped cashew nuts, peanuts, minced green onion/chives, bean sprouts, cilantro
Alright, now that I’ve bombarded you with a gazillion options for making Paleo Cauliflower Bacon Fried Rice, what are ya gonna cook?
Cauliflower Fried Rice with Bacon Recipe
- 4 slices bacon, chopped
- 1 small onion, finely minced
- 1 head cauliflower, grated
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1 cup frozen mixed vegetables
- 1 tablespoon Bragg's Liquid Aminos, Coconut Aminos or fish sauce
- In a wok or large saute pan over medium heat, cook bacon until almost crispy.
- Add the onions and stir fry until translucent.
- Turn heat to high. Add the grated cauliflower and stir fry for 1 minute. Add water and mixed vegetables, stir well, cover the pan and let the cauliflower mixture steam for another 3 minutes or until tender.
- Uncover and add Bragg's (or your choice of seasoning) to combine. Toss well. Taste and add additional seasoning as desired.