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Cauliflower Gets The Love it Deserves
From "Steaks" to Sandwiches, This is the Vegetable of the Moment
For years — maybe since the first cauliflower rose from the earth — children have refused to fall in love with the vegetable. It could be because of its resemblance to a brain, or it could be because many parents simply boiled the poor plant to death and served it as a mushy, gray side dish to meatloaf, but until recently there wasn’t much adoration for the cauliflower.
I, myself, hated cauliflower until I devoured a wood-roasted cauliflower “steak” at Pizza Domenica in New Orleans. Served with some whipped feta, it continues to be one of my best-loved restaurant dishes and a “must have” when I’m in the Big Easy.
It seems everyone is catching on to the cauliflower craze. Buffalo cauliflower, cauliflower steaks, and cauliflower rice are common menu items for both vegans and people simply looking for a delicious meat or grain substitute lately.
Now, the vegetable is getting its turn in the fast-food segment with the announcement that Chick-fil-a is testing a cauliflower sandwich in Denver, Charleston, S.C., and North Carolina’s Greensboro-Triad region. According to the company website, the sandwich is “made with a tender filet cut from a whole, real cauliflower”, whch is battered, fried, and served in a bun with pickles and Buffalo sauce.
Cauliflower is also the star of a po’ boy sandwich by Jeanine Donofrio. The Love and Lemons author also has a new book set to be released: Love and Lemons: Simple Feel Good Food.
The book is divided into several easy-to-identify chapters - Breakfasts, Salads, Soups and Stews, Dinners, and Desserts, and each chapter is then divided into two parts: recipes you can make with minimal prep and recipes for food you can prepare ahead of time to make meal prep easy.
Donofrio says cauliflower is perfect for her New Orleans-inspired sandwich. “The crisp-tender cauliflower reminds me of the texture of fried shrimp or chicken bites, and I toss it in a lemony, Creole-spiced panko coating for a boost of flavor. Finished with juicy tomatoes, crisp lettuce, and a creamy/tangy/smoky sauce.”
If you’re hankering for a toothsome sandwich and want to get in on the cauliflower craze, try the po’ boy recipe for dinner tonight:
Crispy Cauliflower Po’ Boy (courtesy of Love and Lemons)
Po’ Boy Recipe Ingredients
The batter is a mix of panko, Creole seasoning, and lemon zest to coat the cauliflower. A lightly beaten egg binds it to the veggies.
Make an easy homemade remoulade sauce with five simple ingredients:
Mayo is the creamy base.
Garlic adds depth of flavor.
Hot sauce spices it up.
Paprika gives it a smoky kick.
Dijon mustard adds a tangy finish.
Once your ingredients are prepped, these sandwiches are easy to put together. Here’s what you need to do:
Mix together the panko, Creole seasoning, and lemon zest. Dip each cauliflower floret in the egg wash, and then toss it in the panko mixture until it’s fully coated.
Spread the breaded cauliflower florets on a parchment-lined baking sheet, drizzle them with olive oil, and roast them in a 400-degree oven until they’re crispy and golden — about 20 minutes. (If you have one, an air-fryer works here too!)
While the cauliflower cooks, stir together the remoulade sauce.
Finally, load up the sandwiches with the breaded & baked cauliflower, the sauce, and all the fixings! Enjoy!