Friday, January 04, 2013

Cauliflower Tater Tots

Oven Roasted Cauliflower Tater Tots
I made a commitment in 2012, to drop a pound a month. I didn't succeed, though I got pretty close! I lost 10 pounds and it has made a world of difference in my energy level.

Diets don't work, at least not for me, but sadly admitting what it is that makes me fat? Well, that seemed to do the trick this year. Because it's not the cakes and cookies that create a problem for me. It's the bread. And, potatoes. I'm slowly evolving into a potato. I get rounder and plumper every year. :(

So that's what inspired me to get creative with veggies. This recipe, which was adapted from a Weight Watchers recipe, is about half the calories of regular tater tots and it tastes better than the potato version! At least, I think so.

Cauliflower Tater Tots
1 large head cauliflower
1 large egg
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Deer Valley Oomph*

Begin by turning that head of cauliflower into 'rice.' Pop this raw veggie into a food processor and chop it up very fine, into teeny tiny rice-like pieces. If you live in the desert southwest (like I do) the air will dry out the cauliflower bits rather quickly.

TIP: Spread the little cauliflower bits onto a paper towel ~ try to absorb as much moisture as you can.

And, then... Put the Cauliflower rice into a bowl, whisk an egg, pour that onto the cauliflower, stir in the Parmesan cheese. Using your hands, shmoosh these goodies into tater tot shapes. Spread onto a cookie sheet and bake @400 degrees (F.) for approximately 20 minutes, or until a nice crispy brown on the edges.

* TIP: Do not use low fat, low sodium cheese.  That's just bad, bad stuff. Fat and sodium contribute mightily to the flavor and texture of cheese. If you want to go that route, skip the cheese altogether. (I worked for Healthy Choice for many years and I know a thing or two about what goes into that crap.)

** Deer Valley Oomph is a southwestern seasoning that gives veggies a great flavor kick. I live in Park City, just down the road from Deer Valley Ski Resort, so this is an easy seasoning for me to find. If you're looking to create your own, try something like this:

Southwestern Seasoning Ingredients: 
  • 1/4 cup EACH: chili powder and onion powder 
  • 2 tablespoons EACH: ground cumin, ground coriander, dried oregano, dried basil, & garlic powder.

25 comments:

black bear cabin said...

wow...i LOVE cauliflower and that sounds fantastic! :) Thanks for sharing, i cant wait to try it!

Lisa at Greenbow said...

This time of year when we are stuck inside so much it is fun to try new recipes. This sounds like a winner. I will give it a whirl.

Marguerite said...

Sounds like we had a similar plan in 2012. I too was looking to drop a little weight, very gradually, as I believe it's about changing diet rather than drastic exercise and strange food. In my case sugar was the culprit. I'm still working on trying to cut that out but oh what a weakness I have.

Sue said...

Sadly, for me the main culprit is wine. It converts to sugar, the real enemy. I do exercise regularly and manage to balance it all out but every year it get's tougher.

I'm not a cauliflower fan but this sounds like a way to become better acquainted :).

Sue said...

Sadly, for me the main culprit is wine. It converts to sugar, the real enemy. I do exercise regularly and manage to balance it all out but every year it get's tougher.

I'm not a cauliflower fan but this sounds like a way to become better acquainted :).

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Promise me you won't give up wine, Sue. Life is not worth living if we cast aside that yummy vice! :D

Carolyn ♥ said...

This really sounds delish! We spent a few days up in Deer Valley, should have bought the Oomph! I'll try your version.

Melospiza said...

These look delicious. And roasted cauliflower is one of my very favorite things.

quigs said...

About how many servings does this recipe make? Thinking about bringing it to a Fellowship breakfast this Sunday at church.

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

You'll get about two dozen nibbles out of a head of cauliflower. :)

sheilaleanne said...

These look delicious! How long do you bake them for?

sheilaleanne said...

These look delicious! How long do you bake them for?

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Well, that would help, wouldn't it? :))

Bake them for approximately 20 minutes or until the edges are crispy brown.

Good catch. I added the time info into the post. Thanks for stopping by. Enjoy the recipe!

t. said...

When do you add the Deer Valley Oomph?

jib said...

which parmesan cheese-the good stuff you buy in a bag or the stuff in the green can. i said bag stuff hubby said can stuff. looking forward to trying this

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Hi, jib!
Go for the stuff in the can. It's 100% cheese (surprising, I know) and it will save you some $$. Thanks for stopping by!

Anonymous said...

This recipe didn't work for me AT ALL. I tried it on the cookie sheet and they stuck horribly. I also tried frying them and they fell apart. They didn't taste very good either. Sorry, but i won't be making it again.

Carolyn said...

How do they stay together? Im following the recipe but they are not holding any shape & falling apart on the cookie sheet.

jib said...

we made them once. mine also did not stick together well but might have been because the "rice" was too wet. If I make these again i will definitely being drying it out a bit more AND i will add some sort of spice to them. I am allergic to the members of the pepper family so I can't do spicy. Might do herbes de provence or italian seasoning but they were pretty bland and obviously cauliflower.

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Thanks, Jib;
I updated the post to include this: TIP: Spread the little cauliflower bits onto a paper towel ~ try to absorb as much moisture as you can.

It was in there when I originally posed it, but easily missed.

MY APOLOGIES to those of you who had difficulty keeping those itty bitty cauliflower bits sticking together...

Vira said...

Yummy.i Love to do it. Do you health benefits of it?
http://q.gs/3399880/cauliflower

Dafni said...

We make a super yummy pizza crust out of cauliflower. The key to getting it to stick is, after you rice it, pour it into a clean kitchen towel and ring it til your arms hurt! And then get someone else to come do the same. Seriously. Ring. The. Crap. Out. Of. It. Making this tonight! Can't wait! I'll let you know how it turns out!

Krp Diem said...

These were fabulous! You definitely want to squeeze the blitzed cauliflower between towels and drain before mixing in the egg.
I flattened my tots with a spatula and they came out crispy and delicious. So good. Didn't taste like cauliflower at all. I don't know how that's possible but it's true. Such a great recipe, thank you!

MaryAnn said...

Hei Kate, I just discovered you on pintrest and would very much like to follow your high altitude gardening blog. I live in the foothills of the Jotenheim mountains in Norway and am an avid "give it a try - if it works, they live, if it doesn't, they die" gardener at an altitude of around 2,300 feet - I think. I couldn't find a place to sign up to follow your blog. Can you help me? I really enjoyed what I've read so far from roaming through pintrest.
Thanks, MaryAnn

Kate/High Altitude Gardening said...

Hi, MaryAnn;
Thanks for the note and I like you're attitude! Gardening is a blast, but don't take it too seriously. I set up subscribe options on the right column of my blog.

Happy Gardening! - Kate