I think all good recipes start with sauteed onions and garlic. There is no better smell. I used to think I was a superhero, with the specific power of fearlessly cutting onions with nary a tear. However, I recently chopped one up without my contact lenses in, and I wept uncontrollably–so I think I found my kryptonite (does that even makes sense?).
As a kid, I loved when my mom made “hamburger corn and potato stuff”–aka shepherd’s pie. However, as a more grown-up kid I wanted a lighter and less starchy version, with more veggies. Whole Foods came to the rescue.
I made the millet ahead of time and let it cool on the stove while I went to yoga. You can also use any kind or combination of beans that you like.
3 tablespoons non-dairy butter, plus more to oil baking dish (or olive oil)
3/4 cup dried millet, rinsed and picked over
Salt and pepper to taste
5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 cup rice milk
1/2 head cauliflower, broken into small florets
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 (16-ounce) package frozen mixed vegetables (I used TJ’s “Foursome”)
1/4 cup chopped parsley, plus leaves for garnish
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 (15-ounce) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
Preheat oven to 450°F. Oil a 9-inch square baking dish with butter and set aside.
Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a medium pot. Add millet and 1 teaspoon salt. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in another medium pot on medium heat. Add half of the garlic and cook until light golden, 3 minutes. Add rice milk and cauliflower and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat and cook until very tender, about 12 minutes. Add cooked millet to cauliflower and mash together with a potato masher until creamy. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter or oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions, remaining garlic and thyme and cook, stirring frequently, until onions soften, about 4 minutes. Add mixed vegetables and chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper. Cook 6 minutes. Stir in tomato paste. Add kidney beans to the vegetable mixture along with 3/4 cup water, stirring to combine well.
Spread the vegetable-bean filling in the bottom of the baking dish. Sprinkle corn evenly over the mixture, then top with the cauliflower mash. Bake for about 25 minutes, until heated through. Cool for 5 minutes, then serve, garnished with parsley leaves.
The cauliflower-millet mash is really good! very satisfying, and doesn’t weigh you down like starchy mashed potatoes. Millet is also very good for you and is gluten-free.