Thursday, February 11, 2016

When Buffaloes Fly

I can't remember what I was searching for. I can't recall if it was on Pinterest or Twitter or YouTube or plain old Google. I do know I didn't type in the search words "cauliflower" or "vegan" or "Buffalo" or "wings" or "Super Bowl Snacks for People Who Live on Tree Bark."

But somehow I stumbled across a grand thing. A thing of wonder. A vegan treat for carnivores. A carnivorous treat for vegans. We discovered Cauliflower Hot Wings.

Back between my 20 or so years of being a vegetarian and my current status of being vegan, hot wings became one of my favorite things to order at restaurants. Not as an appetizer, those things will ruin your appetite - I would order the wings as my entree. I loved the spiciness cooled by the Ranch dressing. I loved the pieces of celery that made me feel better about all that chicken. And I loved the fact that my husband wouldn't steal any of them. Because as much as he loved meat, and he loved meat, he hated "gnawing on bones" as he would put it. He didn't want to be reminded that meat came from animals, and the bones are pretty much a dead giveaway on that front.

Enter complete veganism for a few years now. No meat, and no bones about it. No hot wings, no cold wings, no buffaloes roaming in our home. Until this recipe literally flew into my laptop. 

Vegan Buffalo Wings

1 head cauliflower, chopped into bite-sized pieces

1 cup garbanzo bean flour
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup vegan milk
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 dash hot sauce

1/2 cup hot sauce
1/2 cup ketchup 

Heat oven to 350. Cover baking sheet with parchment paper or non-sticking option of your choice. Combine water, milk, flour and spices to make a thick batter. Dip cauliflower in generously and place on baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, turning halfway through.

Combine ketchup and hot sauce. Dip baked cauliflower pieces in the sauce and put back on the baking sheet. Cook for another 20 minutes or so until they become all yummy looking. Then chop up another cauliflower and start again because your first batch will be gone in no time. 

Something happens to that lowly cauliflower in the process. It must just love all the attention of getting double dipped, because it magically transforms itself into something that is no longer a cruciferous vegetable. How can I describe it best? To be honest, it tastes a lot like chicken.

So get yourself some garbanzo bean flour...

...whip up some batter...

...make a hot diggity sauce...

...get in your double dippin' groove...

...and make some of these cauliflower hot wings!
(No buffaloes were harmed in the making of this appetizer.)