Cauliflower: The New Kale? 7 Recipes to Convince You
Believe it or not, the unassuming cruciferous has been showing up on many experts’ 2014 food reports, including the Huffington Post. Expert foodies are predicting the shy veggie may wind up a superstar this year, much like kale’s stratospheric rise to popularity in the last few years.
It’s already popping up on trendy restaurant menus all over the place. Vegetarian restaurant Dirt Candy in New York City’s East Village offered a popular meatless “chicken” and waffles plate that featured cauliflower, and Salvation Taco in Midtown offers a roasted cauliflower taco with curried crema.
Gone are the days of bland, white mush or being relegated to the crudité platter. Cauliflower certainly seems to be stepping into the spotlight. And with gorgeous purple, green, and orange varieties, it can really make a statement.
So we rounded up some of our favorite ways to serve this versatile veggie—no boring boiling allowed. Roasting brings out the cauliflower’s natural sweetness, and it goes equally well with creamy, cheesy treatments as it does in Asian and Indian dishes. Incorporate one of these dishes into your next event’s menu and you’re sure to be serving up a trendy and tasty treat.
Cauliflower Parmesan — Cauliflower can be sliced into thick steaks and cooked as a beautiful meat substitute in many recipes, like this tempting vegetarian take on chicken parmesan.
Manchurian-style Cauliflower (Lahsuni Gobi) — This homestyle recipe from chef Suvir Saran is a recreation of the Chinese immigrant-influenced dishes of Calcutta’s Chinatown. Sweet and a little spicy, it will make converts out of even avowed cauliflower-haters.
Whole roast cauliflower with cumin, sumac and lemon — This dish would make a stunning presentation for a family-style meal.
Cauliflower Gratin with Manchego and Almond Sauce — Of course, the traditional French gratin is gorgeous with cauliflower—and made even more so with the addition of rich Manchego cheese and almonds in this version.
Red Lentil Cauliflower Burger — A fascinating variation on your standard veggie burger, these vegan burgers look good enough to please any meat eater. Try them as tasty sliders.
Crispy Orange Cauliflower — A vegan take on the popular Chinese restaurant dish, this would be fabulous served in individual portions for a fun, crispy, addictive appetizer.
Cauliflower Cumin Fritters with Lime Yogurt Sauce — From the cookbook Ottolenghi, this recipe sounds perfect for a first course or passed appetizer tray.
Cauliflower is a great option when you have guests’ health concerns to take into account as well. People come up with ingenious ways to use cauliflower in place of mashed potatoes, tater tots, and even pizza crust to comply with low-carb, paleo, and gluten-free needs.
If these or any other cauliflower dishes inspire you for your next menu, let us know! We’d love to brainstorm a food-trend extravaganza with you for your next event.
Photo Credit: Admanchester via Compfight