FAT-FREE CREAMY CAULIFLOWER DRESSING
Sometimes fat-free gets complicated – till the cauliflower appears from out of nowhere and shows us how to do it! This is one version. Try your own and see how it develops! Then share it here!
Makes 4-1/2 cups
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1 lg. fresh cauliflower, washed, trimmed, leaves and excess stalks removed flush with bottom of cauliflower and discarded
1/2 c. water
1 t. salt
fresh grind black pepper
1 t. smoked paprika
1 t. garlic powder
2 t. dried tarragon
2 t. dried basil
3 T. vegan yeast (nutritional yeast)
1 t. turmeric
1 c. white vinegar
1 c. water
1/4 c. light brown sugar
1/4 c. soy bacon bits
2 T. liquid smoke
1/4 t. celery seed
1 t. additional salt or to taste
Place whole cauliflower, crown side up, in 8 x 8 inch baking dish.
Sprinkle evenly with measured amounts of salt, garlic powder and paprika.
Pour 1/2 cup water into bottom of dish.
Cover with aluminum foil, making a dome in the center and sealing edges tightly.
Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 1 hour. Check with spoon to see if it’s very soft. If you can easily scoop it with a spoon then it is. If not, return to oven for further baking till very soft.
Remove from oven, remove cover and let set till cool enough to handle.
Break cauliflower into pieces and place in food processor, then process till smooth (do not include water from bottom of dish).
To the smooth cauliflower paste add: salt, fresh grind black pepper, smoked paprika, garlic powder, dried tarragon and dried basil. Process till smooth.
Add remaining ingredients, process again till as smooth as possible.
Now transfer to a blender container – one half at a time – and process till it’s even smoother. You’ll be glad you did this last step.
Pack into jars and refrigerate till very cold before using.
Notes: If you use this dressing the day you make it, the cauliflower flavor will not be prominent. However the next day and several days after that, the flavors become a bit more pungent – what you’d expect from crucifers. I like it both ways. The cauliflower adds a vegetable dimension to the dressing that most dressings lack. When you omit the oil, new ways emerge to make dressings tasty and satisfying too.
The goal was to make it taste and texture like a salad dressing. We achieved that today.