Sunday, March 16, 2014

Finger-licking Cauliflower

Cauliflower (English), gobi (Hindi), blomkål (Swedish), whatever you like to call it, it's delicious and seriously versatile. You can eat it raw, grate into a flatbread, puree into a soup, stir-fry, braise, roast, make rice, put in a mash, or what I do often: bake the florets coated in a batter which becomes crispy and chewy, topped with a sticky sauce. It makes my husband and I feel like we're eating something bad for us because it's so addictive. But in all honesty, it's a pretty darn healthy way to enjoy cauliflower.

You may think it strange, but when the weekend comes around, we like to enjoy a big salad with this type of cauliflower preparation instead of a guilty pleasure. It actually makes us feel good eating it; we actually enjoy eating it, and we don't regret it later on. Besides, it allows for a naughty dessert afterwords! 

Eat more cauliflower!
Cauliflower is extremely rich in vitamin C (an antioxidant that helps with iron absorption and also keeps illnesses at bay, is good for brain and eye health, cholesterol distribution and collagen production), high in vitamin K (blood function and bone health and anti-inflammatory, which means it prevents diseases such as cancer ), vitamin B5 (good for energy production) and B6 (good for carbohydrate metabolism, brain health and liver detoxification), B9 or folate (DNA and cell functions, red-blood cell production, and for those who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant) and fiber (good for metabolism: provides healthy gut bacteria, lowers cholesterol, helps you feel full and prevents cancer). It also has detoxifying effects, in case you've been drinking too much! And it's even got a bit of omega-3 fatty acids for brain health! Talk about a superfood! Source: WHFoods

Now that I've hopefully persuaded you to eat more cauliflower, let's talk about my recipe: The basis of this cauliflower-batter-method is getting that distinctive chewy, slightly crispy, meaty cauliflower bite. It is similar to gobi manchurian, if you've ever eaten the popular Indian-Chinese dish that is deep-fried and coated in soy sauce, tomato paste, lots of garlic and spring onions? You could easily manchurianize this recipe and thankfully without resorting to deep-frying. I generally alternate between two types of sauces: one reminiscent of hot wings, which uses Louisiana hot sauce and is spicy, slightly sweet and sour, and the other -- a deep, umami-rich barbeque sauce. It's up to you which finger-licking sauce you prefer, whatever your mood demands! It's perfect for game night, or for us, Eurovision -- can't wait -- America, you're missing out!!!

Just a warning, this could get you cauliflower-addicted like my mom already is! What's your favorite cauliflower dish is?

Happy spring!


Finger-licking Cauliflower 
Serves 2 greedy people 

1 small head of cauliflower, divided into large florets
1/3 cup white rye flour (or all purpose flour)
1/4 cup potato starch (or corn starch)
2 tbs corn meal
1 tsp baking powder
2 tbs canola (rapeseed) oil + 1 1/2 tbs for greasing the baking sheet
1/4 - 1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp salt
Pepper and chili powder to taste

BBQ sauce:
1 tbs olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp paprika powder
3 tbs tomato paste
1 tbs chipotle in adobo
1 tbs molasses
1/2 tbs coconut sugar (optional)
salt and pepper to taste

Hot Louisiana sauce:
2 tbs Louisiana hot sauce
1/2 tbs tomato paste
1 tsp coconut sugar
salt, to taste
1 tsp potato starch
1 cup water

1. Make one of these sauces: BBQ sauce: Heat a saucepan and add oil, onion and garlic. Once the onion is softened, add the paprika powder, tomato paste, chipotle paste, molasses, salt and pepper along with 1 cup of water. Allow to simmer and reduce until very thick, about 10 minutes.

To make the Hot Louisiana sauce: heat the Louisiana hot sauce, tomato paste and sugar in a saucepan. Mix the potato starch with the water and add to the saucepan, stirring constantly so that it doesn't get lumpy. Cook on low heat until cooked and thickened considerably, about 5 minutes. Salt to taste.

2. Preheat the oven to 425F or 220C. In a large bowl, add the rye flour, potato starch, corn meal, baking powder, salt, pepper and chili powder. After a quick mix, add oil and gradually the water to make a very thick cake batter. Add the cauliflower florets and mix thoroughly to make sure all the florets are coated well. Grease a baking sheet lined with parchment paper with 1 1/2 tbs canola oil and add the florets, placing them at least 1 inch apart. Scrape the leftover batter from the bowl onto the florets to ensure a thick coating. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until slightly golden and crisp.

3. Once the cauliflower is baked, coat in sauce and eat immediately! Enjoy!


  1. I relished your cauliflower dish. It was a sensation . pl. go on posting more such yummy recipes.

  2. These are incredible! I will be making them for dinner tonight!



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