What does it take to create nearly the same mouthfeel and flavor of traditional mashed potatoes, except low-calorie and low-carb? Ditching the potatoes! For anyone looking for a low-cal and low-carb substitute for potatoes, try mashing cooked cauliflower and turnips with the usual butter and milk plus a splash of Tabasco which – do not ask me how or why, it stumps me – makes all the difference in the taste.
Turns out, there are two ways to concoct a steaming bowl of light ‘n’ fluffy mashed potatoes. The first calls for a dairy’s worth of butter and cream. The second calls for – get this! – ditching the spuds entirely!
These ‘potatoes’ are really cauliflower and turnips, cooked and mashed. Texture-wise, the mouthfeel is like traditional mashed potatoes except lighter. Taste-wise, once the ‘feel’ of mashed potatoes is present, the two vegetables are subtle enough that you just might not notice!
Now before Mr. Potato Head accuses me of potato-ism, please know that I love potatoes! In fact, you just might say that only a potato
fiend fan would collect this many potato recipes.
But not everyone eats potatoes, either by choice or by prescription. There are the dieters, the whole low carb craze and all. And there are the diabetics, whose blood glucose skyrockets when confronted with too many carbs.
The great news is that this recipe for 'low-carb potatoes' is delicious for everyone. I recommend serving it with something, say under a bowl of stew, rather than on its own.
Now to be honest, when my dad first tried my new low-carb 'potatoes', he sniffed, "There's no substitute for the Irish potato." But another taste-tester with certified culinary credentials thought otherwise, "This could pass for potatoes, no question."
Which camp is yours? Decide for yourself!
CELERIAC MASHED "POTATOES" If you like, substitute celery root (also called celeriac) for the cauliflower. It adds a subtle touch of celery flavor that’s quite lovely. Celeriac is expensive, however, so use a small head with one to two pounds of turnips. The celeriac takes longer to cook so cook them alone for about 15 minutes before adding the turnips.
LIGHTER MASHED 'POTATOES’
but so close, your mouth will do a double-take.
Time to table: 45 minutes
Makes about 4 cups
- Salted water to cover
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 head cauliflower, trimmed, core removed, cut into large florets
- 1/2 pound (or more) turnips, trimmed and cubed
- 1/4 cup whole milk or half & half (fat-free half & half works great, so does buttermilk)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or sage
- Tabasco to taste (don’t skip)
- Salt and white pepper to taste
Bring the salted water and bay leaf to a boil; add the cauliflower and turnips as they’re prepped. Reduce heat to maintain a fast simmer, cover and cook for about 20 minutes or until vegetables are cooked through. Drain well and transfer to a food processor (see TIPS) and process until smooth.
TO SERVE IMMEDIATELY Return to the hot pan on medium high heat. Stirring often, cook off the excess liquid, about 5 – 10 minutes. (Do take the time to cook off the liquid, otherwise, the wateriness will mar the final product.) Stir in remaining ingredients. Transfer to serving bowl. Serve and enjoy!
TO MAKE AHEAD After mashing, stir in about 4 ounces of low-fat cream cheese along with the milk, butter, herbs and Tabasco. Transfer into a well-greased baking dish. Sprinkle with additional chopped fresh herbs. Cover with foil and refrigerate. Return to room temperature. Bake for about 30 minutes at 300F or until hot clear through.
WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 1, PointsPlus 2
A Menu To Experiment with Lighter Mashed 'Potatoes'
More Ways To Serve Lighter Mashed 'Potatoes'
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