This is one of the most unique recipes I’ve ever prepared. What I found interesting about it was how the original authors of the recipe substituted rice for chopped up cauliflower. They called the recipe Shrimp & Cashew Fried “Rice.” Really, as I just mentioned, there is no rice. It’s all cauliflower, so if you’re a cauliflower lover, you’re definitely going to love this one.
As I was preparing this last night, I kept saying how I could add so much more to it and still keep it in line with what it’s supposed to be. The cauliflower is the base. That’s for sure. There’s also shrimp which always makes my life better. Beyond that, there are cashew nuts, garlic, ginger, bell pepper, onion and a few other ingredients. The area where this recipe becomes flexible is where any type of additional ingredient would almost certainly be welcome. Also, you can flavor this dish any way you’d like. It doesn’t need to be with soy sauce and toasted sesame oil. It could be and Asian style sauce, or anything else for that matter.
1 2-Pound Head of Cauliflower, Processed
1 Pound Frozen Shrimp, Peeled and Cleaned
Regular Olive Oil
3 Teaspoons Garlic, Minced
1 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
4 Scallions, Trimmed and Sliced Thin (Keep the greens and white parts separate)
1 Red Bell Pepper, Chopped
1 Green Bell Pepper, Chopped
1 Red Onion, Chopped
1/2 Cup Non-Salted Cashews, Toasted
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
2 Teaspoons Toasted Sesame Oil
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
1 Large Egg, Beaten
1/4 Cup Parsley, Chopped
Hot Sauce for Serving
I’d like to thank Hannaford for their wonderful monthly resource called Fresh. We found this recipe in it and it’s pretty awesome. All Hannaford’s recipes usually are.
Prep the Ingredients
To break down the cauliflower, you’ll need a food processor. Cut the cauliflower into florets. The smaller, the better. Then, add just about two handfuls to the processor and pulse a few times until the florets have reduced to small pieces. They should be the size of individual rice grains. Keep doing this until all the cauliflower has been processed.
Prepping the rest of the ingredients is very straightforward. First, I chopped up the green and red bell pepper.
Then, I chopped the red onion.
After that, I measured out the cashew nuts.
And finally, I put the frozen shrimp into a bowl to thaw out.
Thaw & Dry the Shrimp
To hasten the thawing of the shrimp, you can add some warm water to the bowl. Once the shrimp are totally thawed, drain the water and pat the shrimp dry with some paper towels. When you fry shrimp, they let a lot of water out, so getting rid of as much as you can now can help later on.
Toast the Cashews
Warm a small skillet over medium heat. When the pan is to temperature, add the nuts to it. Flip a few times as you cook. When you see the nuts start to turn dark, remove them from the heat. They’re toasted.
To hurry things along, I usually add about a teaspoon of extra-virgin olive oil to the pan. This is optional.
Cook the Shrimp
Warm a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon olive oil to it and then add the shrimp. Cook for a few minutes until the shrimp have colored all the way through. This should only take about five minutes. When they’re finished, transfer them to a plate and turn off the heat.
Soften the Onion
Warm another large skillet over medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon of olive oil to it and then add the ginger and garlic. Cook for 30 seconds. After that, add the onion and cook, while stirring a few times, for about five minutes or until the onion has somewhat softened.
Soften the Bell Pepper
Add another tablespoon of olive oil to the skillet. Then, add both the red and green bell pepper to it. Again, stir while cooking. This time, just sautee for about three minutes.
Add in the Cauliflower & More
At this point, you can go ahead and add the cauliflower to the skillet and stir it into everything else. You can also add the scallion whites and cashews. Cook for another five minutes, while stirring occasionally.
Add the Flavoring
If you tasted this mix, you’d realize that it was fairly bland. To make this dish come alive, you have to add all the flavoring to it. Go ahead and add the soy sauce, sesame oil, salt and pepper. Mix everything together and give it a taste. Season to your liking.
Cook the Egg
After scrambling the egg in a small bowl, push everything in the skillet to one side. Over the same heat, add the egg to the empty side of the skillet and let it cook for a few minutes. Move it around with a spatula as if you were cooking scrambled eggs for breakfast. Then, once it’s cooked, mix it in with everything else in the pan.
Add Shrimp & Serve
Add the shrimp to the skillet and mix them into the other ingredients to warm them back up. Then, divide the contents of the skillet among the bowls. Sprinkle the green parts of the scallions over everything and sprinkle some parsley as well. Serve with the optional hot sauce and enjoy.
The Final Fried Shrimp & Cauliflower Dish
Do you see what I’m talking about when I say you can add so much more to this dish? Next time, I’m going to add in some celery. I’m also going to brown the onions and peppers more so I get a range of different flavors. I enjoyed the cauliflower as a base and as a rice substitute. This recipe would be perfect for two different types of people; those who love cauliflower and those who don’t eat rice. Anyway, let me know if you try this out. Leave a note in the comment section below. Thanks for reading!