Cauliflower ‘Polenta’ With Roasted Root Vegetables

Posted by Ayala laufer-cahana on
Cauliflower ‘Polenta’ With Roasted Root Vegetables

This flavorful vegan polenta is all cauliflower – as opposed to traditional Italian Polenta which is a comfort dish made with cornmeal, butter and cheese – and is a super healthy, light and really attractive dish. The riced cauliflower gets its creamy satisfying texture from the luxurious yet easy to make cashew butter, and the garlic and Magic Spice give the dish rich flavors and a beautiful golden color.

Try this with any roasted vegetables you have at hand, (see below, with broccolini, carrots and edamame) or alternatively, top it with some shelled edamame a sprinkle of nuts and herbs.


The dish is made of three separate things, but each is simple, and two of the components can be made ahead.

The cashew butter is a good thing to have in the fridge; it’s useful in many dishes, as a sandwich spread, a garnish or an interesting surprise under a grain or a stew. Same for the cauliflower: it will keep for a few days, refrigerated.

This dish was inspired by one I tasted in True Food in Scottsdale – no idea how it’s made there – which was topped with spring Veggies such as asparagus and sugar peas.

Cashew Butter


  • 1 cup cashews
  • 2 tablespoons white miso
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • water 


  1. Soak the cashews in water for a few hours
  2. Strain out the water
  3. In a food processor or blender place cashews, white miso and garlic, process and add enough water so that you get a smooth paste, the consistency of soft peanut butter
  4. Reserve mixture for later use

Cauliflower Polenta


  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 2 tablespoons Dr. Ayala’s Magic Spice
  • 3-4 tablespoons of the cashew butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Rice the cauliflower: Place cauliflower florets in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely chopped, or use a fine box grater or grate the cauliflower
  2. In medium-sized saucepot put riced cauliflower, add water and Dr. Ayala’s Magic Spice
  3. Bring mixture to a boil, lower to a simmer and cook with the lid open until cauliflower is soft and the water is mostly gone, stirring occasionally – about about 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat
  4. Fold in cashew butter, correct seasoning with salt and pepper
  5. Serve immediately or refrigerate and assemble later

Roasted root vegetables


  • 2-3 pounds of root vegetables, such as carrots, parsnips, sweet potatoes, beets, (you can also add butternut squash,) cut into rough 1-inch chunks
  • 1 large red onion, sliced horizontally into medium slices
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste 


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F
  2. Place the root vegetables and red onion on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, toss to evenly coat. Spread out in an even layer.
  3. Roast until the veggies are soft inside and crisp and caramelized on the outside (25-35 minutes)

To Assemble the Dish:

  1. Transfer the cauliflower polenta into the middle of a plate or serving platter (if you prepared it ahead warm it up in saucepot or the microwave).
  2. Spoon the vegetables on top.
  3. Serve hot

Enjoy, Dr. Ayala






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