Every Saturday for my lunch I would always eat Risotto. I have cooked it so many times and tried so many different variations that with confidence, I can say I have mastered the cooking technique. Although there are a large variety of recipes and different cooking styles for making risotto, broadly they are all the same. Each one requires patience, time and care to achieve a flavourful creamy risotto.
However, I haven’t had a Risotto for about six years, not since my nutritionist advised me to avoid all grain and dairy. Even though my stomach issues have improved a lot over the last few years and if I had wanted, I could have tried eating a risotto again, I seem to have lost interest in this Italian dish. But it is strange though, and I wonder why I haven’t lost interest in eating pizzas ?! My life would be so much if easier if I didn’t feel so guilty after having pizza.
Anyway, this means that in my mind I had proclaimed myself a risotto hater. Well that was until last week when in Olive Magazine, I came across the most beautiful cake my eyes had ever seen, and to my great surprise, it was a RISOTTO CAKE!
It’s odd I stopped to look at the article, as any mention of risotto results in me turning off and moving on to the next page. Even with restaurant menu’s, I never look at any item that might be listed if it is a risotto. But this time for some reason, the risotto cake caught my attention to such an extent I became hypnotised looking at the photograph. Seconds after, I said to myself it might be the time to rekindle my past love of risotto.
So here it is ...! Cauliflower risotto cake. My own special version of the risotto cake.
You already know how much I love putting my own little twist on recipes, so for this one, I have used cauliflower rice to cut the carbohydrates from the grains. Even though at first I thought the cauliflower rice would be too sticky or moist, I was happily proven wrong. Instead I had achieved a tender but firm texture any great risotto rice should give your taste palate.
Please note that I stuck to the same type of cheese the original recipe included; being parmesan and ricotta cheese. However, if you might like a vegan option, you could try substituting the parmesan cheese for this vegan recipe, and the ricotta cheese for this one instead.
I would love you to try this recipe and let me know if you like it as much as I did. I absolutely love it and I’m sure it is going to become a regular on my weekly recipe planner !
CAULIFLOWER RISOTTO CAKE
Creamy and silky cauliflower risotto cake with enoki mushrooms and fresh thyme. The healthiest way to enjoy this classic Italian dish.
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
350 g of cauliflower rice
1 cup of hot vegetable stock
200 g of enoki mushrooms or wild mushrooms
butter to grease
fresh thyme, roughly chopped
85g of parmesan cheese (or dairy-free alternative), grated
150g of quark or ricotta cheese
eggs 2, beaten with a fork
thyme, fresh sprigs to decorate
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Grease a 18 cm / 7 in round cake pan.
PREPARE THE CAULIFLOWER RICE
Cut the head of cauliflower into quarters, then trim out the inner core from each quarter. Break apart the cauliflower into large florets with your hands. If the core is tender, you can chip it into pieces and add it with the florets.
Transfer the cauliflower to a food processor. Don't fill the food processor more than 3/4 full; if necessary, process in two batches.
Process the cauliflower in 1-second pulses until it has completely broken down into rice-sized granules.
In a large pan, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil and fry the onions and garlic gently until well softened.
Stir in the cauliflower rice, then pour in 1 cup of vegetable stock. Stir and cook for about 5 minutes, until the cauliflower rice is tender but still crunchy. Set aside.
In a small pan, heat 1 tbsp of olive oil, then sauté the mushrooms and the chopped thyme leaves until golden and tender.
Scrape the cooled cauliflower rice into a large bowl with most of the mushrooms, leaving a few to top the cake later, all the parmesan, ricotta and beaten eggs. Season with plenty of salt and black pepper and mix well.
Tip the cauliflower rice mix into the cake pan and press out firmly to smooth the top.
Arrange the remaining mushrooms on top and scatter over the fresh thyme sprigs, then, drizzle with a little olive oil.
Bake for 30-35 minutes until golden and. Cool for 20 minutes and enjoy!