Whole 30 Cauliflower Mash with Garlic and Rosemary

One thing you need to learn to do when you embark on a Whole 30 is make all kinds of new sides so that you get enough vegetables in your diet. We’ve found that cauliflower is super versatile and takes on the flavor of things you add to it. This makes it a great candidate to turn into a mash.

This doesn’t mean you are trying to mimic mashed potatoes. These don’t taste like mashed potatoes, but this a great side dish that stands on its own.

Whole 30 Cauliflower Mash with Garlic and Rosemary

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1 teaspoon of rosemary (both dried and fresh work)
  • Salt and pepper to taste (I use about 1 teaspoon of each for a large head of cauliflower)
  • 1 tablespoon of ghee
  1. Get your vegetable steamer going in a large stock pot with water that comes just up to the bottom of the steamer. Turn the burner on high.
  2. While the water is heating up, quickly wash the cauliflower and cut it into florets. Chop up the stem, too.
  3. Peel the cloves of garlic.
  4. Put the cauliflower and garlic in the pot with the vegetable steamer. Steam for 10-15 minutes. They are done when tender enough to put a fork through with minimal effort.
  5. When fully steamed, move the cauliflower florets and garlic cloves into the food processor. Take 1/4 cup of the steaming liquid and put it in the food processor, too. Add in the rosemary, salt, pepper, and ghee.
  6. Process until it reaches the consistency you like. I leave it in until it is pureed (usually 2-3 minutes).
  7. Alternatively, if you don’t have a food processor, steps 5 and 6 can be done with a potato masher and a bowl or a hand blender.

If you aren’t on the Whole 30, you can add butter and sour cream to make these even creamier. For folks on the Whole 30, stick to the recipe above. Amanda and I eat it even when we aren’t on the Whole 30 because it is delicious.

cauliflower_mash - 5

For Better Chili, Use Whole Dried Chiles

I had an idea a month ago that forever changed the way I make chili. Instead of using that dried chili powder from the grocery store, I decided to buy a bunch of dried chiles and use them to flavor the chili. The results were spectacular.

No matter your chili recipe, with beans or Texas-style, substituting dried chiles for chili powder will give you a huge improvement for just a little more effort.

I first tried removing the stem and soaking the chiles for an hour before pureeing them, but they were still to dry. A few nights ago I tried again, this time removing the stems and pureeing the chiles with the tomatoes I needed in the chili anyway. Then I let this puree sit on the counter for 30 minutes while I prepped everything else. Bingo.

I used my food processor, but you can use any sort of blender. Add the puree in to your favorite chili recipe whenever you’d add the tomatoes.

The flavor came out much fuller and nuanced than traditional chili powder: Earthy, fruity, spicy, sweet, smokey, and bitter.

For a large 10qt pot I used 2-3 peppers from each of these varieties:

  • Anchos
  • Pasillas
  • Gaujillos
  • Mulatos

You can find these close to the Goya section of most well-stocked grocery stores. If there is a hispanic grocery store near you, try there instead. Or, you can always order dried chiles online.

Here is a good guide to figure out the flavor and heat of common chile varieties: http://www.foodsubs.com/Chiledry.html

How to Make Almond Butter

One of the things I love about having a good food processor around is that we can make fresh almond butter whenever we want. We buy the almonds in bulk, so we can make fresh almond butter for cheaper than we can buy it in the store. It takes just ten minutes and we customize it to our tastes.

We go through a pound of almond butter in about a week. We primarily eat it with apples or celery (this has helped us get through our Whole 30), but we’ll also throw it in the occasional smoothie. Here is how we make it:


  1. Take 1lb of whole almonds and put them in the food processor. I like using 1/2 raw and 1/2 roasted almonds.
  2. Put the lid on the food processor and turn it on.
  3. Wait 9 minutes. Be patient. It will look almost like almond butter between the 5-9 minute marks, but it will disappoint you if you taste it. It will be mealy and dry instead of smooth and creamy.
  4. At the 9 minute mark, take the lid off and scrape down the sides. Put the lid back on.
  5. Process again for another full minute. This is when the transformation from “meh” to store-bought quality happens. This last minute is when it turns nice and creamy.
  6. Eat a few spoonfuls while it is still warm, then put it into a jar and store in the fridge for up to two weeks.


Your times might vary with your food processor. With my 9-cup Cuisinart workhorse, here are roughly the stages the almonds go through:

Time Consistency
20-30 seconds Chunks for cobbler
1 minute Course meal
1-2 minutes Fine meal
2-3 minutes Almond flour
5-9 minutes Mealy mixture that will taste like almond butter but won’t be smooth enough
10 minutes Just like store-bought



  • Chocolate Almond Butter
    • Add in 1 bar of dark chocolate before processing.
  • Maple almond butter
    • Use maple-roasted almonds (make your own by tossing your almonds with maple syrup and roasting them at 350F for 20 minutes), or add 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • Chunky Almond Butter
    • Pulse for 20-30 seconds and then take out a 1/2 cup of chunks and then put the lid back on and start processing again. Mix the chunks in at the end.
  • Honey Flax Almond Butter
    • Include 1/8 cup of toasted flax seeds and 1/8 cup of raw honey before processing.
  • Try other nuts.
    • Walnuts, cashews, and pecans are all great.
    • Macadamia butter is good, but very rich. I can’t eat much at one time. Macadamia nuts are best mixed in small amounts with almonds or pecans.
    • Pecans + Cashews or Walnuts + Cashews are particularly good combos.
  • If you like a lighter color (or want lighter almond flour), use blanched almonds.



I took a quick hyperlapse of making the almond butter to show the transformation. It is sped up by 12x. I know the video kind of sucks: It is vertical, the vibrations of the food processor moved it all around, and I had to freehand it for the last 5 minutes. I stopped this video at the 9 minute mark, just before we scraped it down and processed it for the final minute.

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Cuisinart Food Processor Blade Recall

If your Cuisinart Food Processor has a blade with rivets like the one pictured above, the blades are being recalled and replaced.

I stumbled across a recall post on DigitalTrends.com and decided to check mine. Sure enough, the one I use regularly and often recommend to readers of this blog is part of the recall. Model sold between July 1996 to December 2015 are subject to this recall.

You can check your model and request a replacement blade here: https://recall.cuisinart.com

I’ve had mine for about four years and my parents have had theirs for over ten. The blades haven’t broken, but I pulled mine out to take a look just in case. To my surprise, the bottom blade cracked on three of the four rivets and the fourth one looks like it has a hairline stress fracture, so it is only a matter of time before it cracks, too:


I submitted a replacement request at https://recall.cuisinart.com. Make sure you check yours before you use it next!

Salsa Verde

Note: I revisited this recipe a year later and made it even better. Check out the new version.

This is one of our favorite condiments for tacos and it makes a great snack with chips. It is very easy to make and keeps for at least a week in the fridge.

Salsa Verde

  • 1lb of tomatillos, husks and stems removed
  • 1-2 jalapeños
  • 1 onion
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • 1 tsp salt

Put the tomatillos, jalapeños, and onion in a medium saucepan, cover with water, the bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain the water, combine the ingredients with cilantro, lime juice, and salt in a food processor, and process until smooth. Let cool before serving.

Remove the husk from tomatillosCover with water
Simmer the veggies for 10 minutesCombine everything in a blender

Salsa Verde