Today’s Vegan Mofo theme is a weird food combo that you love, so here goes nothing! I’m sure you were nodding your head at the title until you got to cauliflower and then just started rolling eyes or scoffing, but I had this epiphany about cauliflower whilst on a walk with a pal and I haven’t been able to get it out of my mind, even though it was a bit of a joke at the time. Sometimes the silliest things can turn out to be the best.
I know this idea seems ridiculous, but it’s actually pretty legit when you want some sweetness but not a whole slab of chocolate, and you have this feeling that you should probably increase your veggie intake and get in some healthy fats instead of deep-fried junk food. Well, this is junk food, Marfigs style. It may be a sign of my impending craziness, but at least I’ll enjoy myself on the way to the mental breakdown I’ll have from all the work piling up. Chocooollaattee!
Ingredients (serves 1-2):
- 1/2 head cauliflower florets, washed and patted dry
- 2 tsp vanilla essence
- 2 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp ginger
- pinch salt
- 1 small lemon
- 2 TBSP coconut oil
- 2 TBSP cacao powder
- 3 tsp sweetener of choice
- 2 TBSP tahini
- 2 TBSP non-dairy milk
- 2 tsp liquid sweetener of choice
- 1/8 cup shelled pistachios, measured then crushed finely
- Mix your tahini, sweetener and non-dairy milk until smooth.
- Slice your florets down the middle, then steam your cauliflower until just soft (approx 3 – 4 minutes) (or roast them!), then toss with the vanilla, half the tahini and spices until covered evenly.
- Fry for a few minutes, adding splashes of lemon juice as necessary to stop it from sticking. Turn the florets over and drizzle the rest of the tahini, frying for a few minutes more until browned (adding lemon juice, again).
- Meanwhile, melt your coconut oil in a dry bowl (any bit of water will make your chocolate freeze!) in the microwave and whisk in the cacao powder and sweetener.
- Once your florets are nicely browned drizzle on your chocolate or dip the florets in the chocolate. Sprinkle on the pistachio dust and serve (knives and forks for drizzling, human paws for dipped!).
I can’t truly express how truly exasperated Man-thing was when he came home and saw this, since he loathes cauliflower (except when hidden in brownies!). All the more for me though! I did explain that I knew it was a weird food combo, but he still thinks this is some sort of sorcery, so I’ve stored most of it in the fridge to munch in his face for dessert 😀 I’m going to eat them chilled but I know that’s taking it too far for some, and warm it’s just really delicious (to me, anyway!).
In some ways this is the 15-minute version of one of my all-time favourite dishes, the baked pistachio chocolate pear pastries – seriously, if you take anything away from this post it is that you should really, really make that at least once. In fact, other than the lack of pears I pretty have all the ingredients on hand since I indulged in pistachios, so I may just send Man-thing out on a pear-buying mission this weekend. Except I have so many assignments to finish I don’t even think I’ll have time to bake, which is why these are pan-fried. It doesn’t at all detract from their glorious frivolity, but some may prefer uber crispness in their cauliflower if they’re going to try out weird stuff like this. :p
Back to the books for me!