The Farmers' Market Table

Rice Pasta with Creamy Cauliflower Sauce

This pasta dish is dairy-free because the “cream” is made from cauliflower.

Rice Pasta with Creamy Cauliflower Sauce
Pin it courtesy of Leda Scheintaub


4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, sliced
2 heads cauliflower, cut into florets
Sea salt
1 pound cooked brown rice penne or fusilli
2 teaspoons dried oregano


1. Combine 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and the garlic in a large skillet, place over medium heat, and cook, stirring, for about 3 minutes, until the garlic begins to turn golden.
2. Raise the heat to medium and add the cauliflower, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ cup water. Cover the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes, until the cauliflower has softened, breaking up larger pieces of cauliflower with a potato masher as the cauliflower cooks and coarsely mashing it as it finishes cooking.
3. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it well, add the pasta, and cook until al dente. Drain. If you are making the pasta in advance, toss it with a little olive oil to prevent it from sticking.
4. Add the oregano to the cauliflower and cook for 2 minutes; add the drained pasta and cook for another 2 minutes or so to warm the pasta through, adding a little more water if the sauce is too thick. Stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Taste and add more salt if needed. Serve immediately.


Leda Scheintaub’s latest work is The Sage and the Cook: Two Generations of Gluten and Dairy Free Cooking, an e-book series in collaboration with whole foods pioneer Rebecca Wood. The first book in the series is Soups and Stews, available from Amazon for $2.99. She is also the coauthor (with Denise Mari) of the forthcoming Organic Avenue; coauthor (with Carol Alt) of Easy, Sexy Raw; the recipe developer for The Ciao Bella Book of Gelato and Sorbetto; and author of Chipotle: Smoky Hot Recipes for All Occasions. She is also a graduate of the chef’s training program at the Natural Gourmet Institute in New York. She has been a freelance writer, editor, and recipe tester for the past ten years. She lives with her husband in southern Vermont, where you’ll often find her at the Brattleboro Area Farmers’ Market.

Nutritional facts: 

Serves 6. Per serving: 373 calories, 11 g fat, 63 g carbohydrates, 7 g protein, 5 g fiber, 27 mg sodium.