Three Sisters Variation with Creamed Cauliflower

I liked how my previous foray into three sisters cooking turned out, so I thought to experiment with the ingredients a bit: amaranth instead of corn, peas instead of beans, keep the squash and add cauliflower.
Amaranth is a traditional mesoamerican grain that is full of protein, fiber, and minerals, and it’s naturally gluten-free. I like its sweet-nutty taste and the texture is an experience – little popping seeds sticking together in a creamy suspension. The color is a bit unappealing, so I used peas to add freshness for the eyes. Ilian got creative with them, serving himself tiny cupfuls 🙂

The squash I tried for this dish was a butternut squash and a Seminole squash, with a nod to Slow Farm and a thanks to Ilian for picking the latter one out at the farm. I do prefer the butternut here for its firmer texture and bolder taste, but I’m glad we got to meet another heirloom variety on our plate!

 

Three Sisters Variation with Creamed Cauliflower


Ingredients

  • 1 cup amaranth
  • 1 medium sized head of cauliflower
  • 1 medium sized butternut squash or 2 Seminole squashes
  • 1.5 cups frozen peas, thawed
  • salt
  • nutmeg
  • water

Directions

  1. Place amaranth with 1 tsp salt and 3 cups water into a pot. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to a simmer. Stirring every now and then, cook for about 25 minutes, or until water has been absorbed. [Amaranth will be sticky; this is not a grain that cooks to a fluffy consistency.]
  2. Cut cauliflower into small pieces, steam for about 15 minutes. Place cauliflower in a flat-bottomed bowl and puree with immersion blender. Add nutmeg and salt to taste.
  3. Peel the squash and scoop out seeds. Cut into very small cubes, steam for 20-30 minutes, depending on squash variety.
  4. Plate the amaranth first, top with cauliflower puree, and sprinkle with squash and peas. Enjoy!

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