Buffalo Cauliflower Grinders
There's a new Whole Foods that was recently built near my house, and I love it. I try not to go too often, but with on-tap kombucha and a killer hot bar, how's a girl supposed to say no?! The store also serves up an incredible, vegan Buffalo Cauliflower Sandwich that I based this recipe off of. Okay, I totally stole the idea. I'm Sorry Whole Foods! Mostly because I can't afford to buy $9 sandwiches every damn day, but also because it's a super easy, super yummy sandwich combo. So maybe it's more like #srynotsry. The hardest thing to find - and maybe the most important part of any good sandwich - is good chewy bread, which I eventually found in the form of ciabatta rolls. You could also use demi-baguettes, or just slap the ingredients between two slices of thick, chewy bread. It's all gonna taste delicious, because buffalo cauliflower is maybe the best sandwich filling ever. It may the best thing ever, if we're being honest. It's spicy, it's tangy, it's so gooooood. So without further ado, I suggest you get to scrollin' and get to preppin' because these scrumptious sandwiches aren't going to make themselves!
1 teaspoon coconut oil
4 heaping cups cauliflower (about 1 large head cauliflower), chopped into bite-sized florets
1 cup hot sauce (we used Frank's Red Hot)
2 cups broccoli slaw (store bought OR just shredded broccoli, carrots + red cabbage)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
pinch of salt
4 demi baguettes or ciabatta rolls
1/2 cup vegan chive cream cheese (we used Kite Hill)
green leaf lettuce, enough for 4 sandwiches
Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Chop the cauliflower florets and toss them in a pan with hot sauce. Cook them together over medium heat, tossing to coat, for about 12-15 minutes or until softened.
While the cauliflower cooks, pour the broccoli slaw mixture into a mixing bowl with the olive oil, lemon juice and pinch of salt. Toss to coat everything evenly and set aside.
Slice the ciabatta rolls or baguettes and smear about 2 tablespoons of cream cheese onto one side. Wash and dry the lettuce and set it aside.
When the cauliflower is done and cools slightly, scoop it onto the rolls and top with the slaw, leaf lettuce, and other half of the bun. Serve immediately or wrap in paper and take 'em along on a picnic lunch. Either way, enjoy!
Leftover cauliflower stays good in the fridge for up to a week.
BBQ Cauliflower Bites
THE BIG GAME IS ALMOST HERE! And maybe like me you're like 'Uhhh cool.' But even if that's the case, we're both here because we like to eat delicious vegan food, which just so happens to be the only reason I tune into the Super Bowl - okay endless snacks AND the commercials. Whatever. The point here is that this gal LOVES snacking, and these BBQ Cauli Bites are the BEST snack! Spicy, tangy, sweet - as messy and delicious as the real thing, but without the meat or weird ingredients. These flavor-packed, guilt-free munchies will make you seem like the best cook at the party! Plus, cauliflower takes up way less room in your stomach than chicken would, aka MORE BEER.
Even if you're not into watching football this Sunday, you should still make these. 'Cause they are really fricken delicious. I made a pretty big batch last weekend and Alex and I finished it together, no problem. They don't need any dipping sauce since they're slathered in any BBQ sauce, but if you're into ranch dip, it might be a delicious addition. We also have a great recipe for crunchy coated cauliflower nuggets if that's more your style. Oh and this sriracha buffalo hummus? PERFECT with all that beer. Let's eat!
1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 cup all-purpose OR whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 large head (about 6 cups) of cauliflower, cut into florets
1 1/2 cups BBQ Sauce
Preheat the oven to 450º. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the unsweetened almond milk, flour, garlic powder, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper.
Dip the cauliflower florets into the mixture, coating evenly. Tap off any excess batter and place the florets onto the baking sheet. Bake for about 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
While the cauliflower bites cook, heat the BBQ sauce in a small saucepan, stirring occasionally, until heated through. When the cauliflower bites have cooked, pull them from the oven and using tongs, carefully dip each floret completely into the bbq sauce mixture and place it back onto the baking sheet. Continue this until all the florets have been dipped. Bake for 25-30 more minutes, again flipping about halfway through. When they’re finished, serve immediately!
Leftovers don't reheat very well. These are best eaten fresh!
Roasted Romanesco Cauliflower
As sexy as Jamie Oliver is (that accent- and he cooks!), I don't follow his Instagram for the selfies. His feed is regularly updated (by I'm sure not him) with delicious food photos and recipe inspiration, and often times he posts vegetarian & vegan recipes. I had seen his Whole Roasted Cauliflower recipe as an meat-free alternative to a roast around the holidays and was totally intrigued. I already love cauliflower, and after I tried it- I fell in love. A whole head of cauliflower is rarely more than $2, and the rest of the ingredients I had on hand. Plus, its a pretty guilt-free, set-it-and-forget-it meal...which is what I'm all about. And while Jamie's recipe was delicious, mine is better.
I mean it! Okay, maybe I'm biased, but I think that using romanesco here steps the whole dish up a notch. Not only is it the most gorgeous and mathematically-pleasing vegetable, but it has such a great buttery flavor all on its own that it really adds depth and flavor to a pretty simple dish. We love smoked paprika, and I think the lemon and sherry round out the spicy, smoky flavors nicely. Its an easy dish to make on a busy night as a main dish or side, and is super customizable. Don't have smoked paprika? Try cumin & cayenne or curry & turmeric! Either way, run down to the farmers market and get a head of this gorgeous cauliflower while its still in season- you won't regret it.
1 large head romanesco cauliflower
1/4 cup liquid coconut or olive oil
1/2 cup diced red onion
6 cloves garlic, minced
juice of 1 whole lemon (about 1/4 cup)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon each salt & pepper
1/2 cup dry sherry
fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Trim the washed cauliflower leaves and cut the stem, if necessary, so that cauliflower stands upright in a dutch oven or heavy cast-iron pan (with a lid). Place the cauliflower in the pan, and use a sharp knife to carve a 1 in. deep X into the top of the cauliflower.
In a small bowl, combine oil with diced onions, minced garlic, lemon juice, spices, salt & pepper. Pour over the cauliflower, slightly pulling the X apart so the oil can seep into the middle. Try to evenly coat the cauliflower (no need to flip it over). Pour sherry lightly over the whole thing, then cover the pan. Bake for 40 minutes, or until cauliflower is fork-tender, then remove the lid and cook for another 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and serve with an extra squeeze of lemon juice and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro or parsley. Serves 4, leftovers can be refrigerated and reheated for up to a week. Enjoy!
Crispy Cauliflower Nuggets
Exciting news! (I mean, beside the fact that you're about to make your own deliciously crunchy cauliflower nuggets.) I got the job I've been so hoping to hear back from at the non-profit, and I'm so excited about it! So excited, in fact, that I demanded we celebrate by making nuggets and fries for dinner. Alex happily obliged. Now the nuggets might be gone but the excitement is STILL HERE! I feel like this move is to a position that is much more closely aligned with the work I'd like to spend the rest of my life doing, and again, I'm PUMPED! So, go me. Enough of that though...how 'bout those nuggets?
Crispy, perfectly golden, fried cauliflower nuggets will change the future of nuggets as we know it. Alex claimed they were better than any chicken nugget he had ever had (duh!), and loved the slight crunch and the fact that he didn't feel like crap after eating them. I love all things fried (in moderation, of course), and was happy to have something to slather in ketchup- my guilty pleasure. Now I know frying is bad and we shouldn't do it, but if we're gonna splurge here, at least you're frying up a vegetable, right? And 2014 has been named the Year of the Cauliflower- so let's do this thing!
2 cups cauliflower florets (about 1/2 head of cauliflower)
1/4 cup high heat oil, for frying (coconut, grapeseed, and avocado oils are all great high-heat options)
1/4 cup ground flax
1/4 cup almond meal
3/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs (gluten-free or regular)
1/4 cup almond meal
1 teaspoon organic sugar
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
In a small bowl, make flax wash by mixing ground flax, almond meal, and water. Set aside. Next, mix together in a medium-sized mixing bowl the bread crumbs, almond meal, sugar, nutritional yeast, garlic salt, salt, pepper, and cayenne. This mixture will become your breading.
Heat 1/4 cup oil n a large frying pan over medium heat. Dip cauliflower florets into the flax wash mixture, coating lightly but evenly. Next, dip cauliflower into the flour mixture and coat completely. Drop coated cauliflower nuggets into the heated oil, and cook until golden and crunchy, then flip and repeat until the nugget is evenly fried, about 2-3 minutes on each side. Using tongs or a spatula, move cooked nuggets to a paper towel lined plate to absorb excess oil, let cool several minutes, then enjoy with your favorite dipping sauce! Best if eaten immediately. Uneaten nuggets can be reheated in the oven at 375 degrees for 10 minutes, or until warm. Enjoy!
**Not much for fried foods? You can try baking these at 400 degrees for about 20-30 minutes, flipping halfway through. They won't be nearly as crunchy and crispy, but probably much healthier. Do what you gotta do!
More cauliflower? YES!! Because its still the Year of the Cauliflower (all year long!), and I had a serious cheeze craving. And who doesn't love a good batch of vegan nachos, anyway? This deliciously cheezy sauce started as an attempt to use up the rest of the cauliflower left over after the Kung Pao Cauliflower recipe and turned into 2 more heads of cauliflower worth of recipe testing, but I am SO EXCITED to share this one with you. In my (clearly humble) opinion, this is the BEST knock-off queso I have EVER eaten. Its spicy, full of flavor, and tastes like the real thing! Its even mimics the texture almost exactly, without any weird stabilizers. Plus, its a nacho topper you can feel pretty good about, being that its made from cauliflower. But trust me, if you don't tell anyone, they would never know. Top it with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or cilantro and serve on homemade nachos, burritos, and enchiladas. Its great warmed up but pretty darn good straight out of the fridge, too!
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 heaping cups cauliflower florets (about 1/2 head of cauliflower)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
1-12 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon white miso (or any color, but I prefer the tanginess of a lighter, sweeter miso)
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
In a medium sized frying pan, begin to melt the tablespoon of coconut oil. Add in the cauliflower, garlic, and chopped onions. Cover and cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally and cook until onions turn glassy and cauliflower begins to brown, about 8-12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to slightly cool.
While the veggies are cooling, pull out a high speed blender or food processor (we used our Vitamix), and toss in all the other ingredients- from the roasted red peppers to the salt. Mix them on high for about a minute, just combining them. Add in slightly cooled veggies and blend or process on high for 20 seconds to 2 minutes, depending on the strength of your machine. You want everything to be completely blended, so you're left with a pourable, dippable queso cheeze. Once finished, move the queso to a bowl and serve with chips or over your favorite Mexican dishes.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks, or freeze. To reheat, pour into a saucepan and cook on low, stirring frequently, until heated through. Makes 4(ish) cups.
Kung Pao Cauliflower
As I'm sure you've heard, 2014 is shaping up to be the 'Year of the Cauliflower'- which basically means its the trendy veggie this year, as decided by the blogosphere. I'm sure we'll see some cauliflower craziness, but I couldn't not jump on this train, because I am a serious fan of this member of the cabbage family. (Did anyone catch last weeks Parks and Rec? Cauliflower is more than just a dead tree, people.)
I've been working with a cauliflower buffalo wings recipe intermittently since summer, but haven't made one worth sharing yet. I have, however, learned a lot about cooking and eating cauliflower. For instance, I like a little crunch to my tiny trees, and prefer them without a breading so I can still taste the cauliflower itself. After a few solid tries, we got this recipe perfect. I measure my recipe success by meal leftovers, and they were none to be found after we whipped this one up. I'm so excited about this recipe because its healthy, crazy rich in flavor, and makes a great shared meal (or leftovers!).
KUNG PAO SAUCE:
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup braggs liquid amoinos or soy sauce
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/8 teaspoon wasabi powder (optional)
2 teaspoons corn starch
1 teaspoon coconut oil
1 tablespoon coconut oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium onion, juilienned
1 bell pepper, chopped OR about 1/2 cup julienned peppers
1/2 large head cauliflower (about two cups of florets)
Cook cauliflower & garlic together in a wok or large frying pan on medium-high heat until cauliflower is slightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add onions & peppers and sauteé another 3 minutes, until onions are just becoming glassy. Add sauce and cook until sauce thickens, another 3-5 minutes or so. Remove from heat, serve over brown rice with a sprinkle of sesame seeds and green onions, and enjoy! Serves 2, saves well in the fridge for up to a week.