These last few weeks, I have been struggling with some food related problems. I’m not exactly sure what it is that is bothering me, but my breaking point came a few days ago when I had some really bad stomach pain. I had been “putting up” with it for awhile, but I decided something had to change! So, for the time being, I have decided to eliminate dairy from my diet. Yes, this is a big step for the girl that makes her own cheese.
Believe it or not, when I was in high school, I was actually found to be allergic to dairy. I would get terrible headaches, and break out in hives when I consumed any sort of dairy. But, somehow, I grew out of it! So, I know I can do this, and I know it is something I need to do right now.
I’m trying not to think about it too much, because otherwise I focus on all the foods I CAN’T have. My philosophy all throughout my weight loss, and since going gluten/grain free – is to focus on what I CAN have, and find ways to still have the foods that I love. Because I really do find great pleasure in cooking and eating!
So! Now that is out of the way. My husband is still eating cheese and milk and yogurt (yogurt! That has been a downer for me, because I love my yogurt! And especially making my own yogurt!) I have been trying to make foods that are naturally dairy free, just like I like to make foods that are naturally gluten free!
So, I decided to jump right in! This broccoli/cauliflower casserole is generally made with a cheesy dairy-filled sauce, and topped with several kinds of cheese. Why not!
This first thing I did was make a non dairy “parmesan cheese”.
Non Dairy Parmesan Cheese Crumbles
Adapted from Yummy Vegetarian Delights
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1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
salt/pepper to taste
Place the walnuts in a food processor and process until finely ground. Add in the nutritional yeast, and salt/pepper, and pulse to combine.
Store in the fridge.
So tasty! It is crunchy as well, which is what I was looking for as a topping on my casserole.
I think this will be good on just about anything! It is slightly salty (which parmesan cheese is), slightly cheesy from the nutritional yeast (like parmesan), and even has a slight crunch!
Broccoli Cauliflower Casserole
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2 broccoli crowns, cut into florets
1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
1 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp quinoa flour
2 cups unsweetened almond milk
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
1 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
1/4 tsp fresh nutmeg, grated
1/4 cup dairy free parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Cut the broccoli and cauliflower into florets. In a large skillet, add 2 inches of water to a bowl. Add the broccoli and cauliflower, and blanch about 5 minutes, until just fork tender.
Drain the broccoli and cauliflower into a strainer, and wipe out the pan. Place back on the stove over medium heat.
Add the coconut oil, and melt. Add in the flour, minced garlic, and chopped rosemary. Whisk to form a paste. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly add in the milk, whisking constantly. Continue whisking as the the mixture comes to a boil. It should thicken slightly as it heats up. Add additional flour, if needed, to make it the consistency you would like. Add salt/pepper to taste. Pour in the broccoli and cauliflower mixture and mix to coat all the vegetables.
Prepare your baking dish – an 8×8 baking dish would work. I used a casserole dish. Pour in the broccoli/cauliflower mixture, and top with 1/4 cup of the parmesan cheese.
Bake for 30 minutes, or until warmed and the sauce is bubbly.
Sprinkle with additional “parmesan” if you would like… live it up! And if you want to go back for seconds … that’s ok too!