Cauliflower with a Buffalo Twist

Cauliflower with a Buffalo Twist

Here’s a fun twist on Buffalo wings that uses cauliflower in place of chicken wings. It's such a great idea and it is popping up on menus everywhere throughout the country – from wine bars to sports bars. This is a wonderful version of Buffalo wings that will please everyone, including vegetarians. It is so easy to make and it's pretty too, with curly ribbons of shaved carrots and celery used either as a base, or as a garnish on top, or both. I opted to use the orange cauliflower, but any color cauliflower will do. Also, most of the versions we tried dusted the cauliflower with flour before baking, but I discovered that matzo meal makes the perfect crusty edges, and sometimes I simply toss it in a little bit of olive oil, season it and bake it. The key is to bake the cauliflower at a high temperature for a short amount of time. This allows the florets to brown nicely, while maintaining an al dente character to the vegetable. You can certainly use store-bought blue cheese dressing, but this recipe (below) for yogurt blue cheese dressing is very easy and has fewer calories and less fat than traditional blue cheese dressing.

Ingredients

Cauliflower with a Buffalo Twist

  • 1 head orange or white cauliflower cut into bite-sized florets
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons Buffalo wing or Louisiana Hot Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt of your choice I recently found that McCormick sells an actual Buffalo Wing Seasoning packet
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 cup matzo meal

Garnishes:

  • 2 celery sticks peeled into ribbons with a potato peeler
  • 2 carrots peeled into ribbons with a potato peeler
  • 1/4 cup blue cheese crumbles
  • Buffalo Wing or Louisiana Hot Sauce

Yogurt Blue Cheese Dressing

  • 5 oz. plain low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons Yogurt Blue Cheese Dressing
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper
  • 1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

Instructions

Cauliflower with a Buffalo Twist

  • Preheat oven to 450 F.
    Break the head of cauliflower into small, bite-sized florets.
    Rinse and allow to dry on a paper towel for a half-hour.
    Place in a large bowl or a baggie and drizzle olive oil and Buffalo or Louisiana Hot Sauce into the bag and toss well.
    Mix matzo meal, seasoning, paprika, salt, and pepper and sprinkle over cauliflower in the bag to coat most of the edges of the florets.
  • Lay cauliflower out onto a large baking sheet that’s been oiled or prepared with cooking spray.
    Bake for approximately15 minutes, turning once, until able to pierce cauliflower with a sharp knife, but still al dente and beginning to brown.
    Remove from oven and place on or under a bed of the carrot and celery ribbons and sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles.

Yogurt Blue Cheese Dressing

  • In a small bowl, mash blue cheese until fairly smooth using a fork.
    Stir vinegar, olive oil, white pepper, and lemon pepper.
    Blend until well mixed.
    Add yogurt and stir until smooth.
    This makes a very thick dressing, so you can thin it down with olive oil and more vinegar as desired.
    Refrigerate until ready to use.

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