I’ve been aiming to eat less and less meat every year. My main pitfalls are periods of stress where I just can’t think and grab whatever food is in front of me and cheese, oh god, so much cheese.
As I gear up for Veganuary, which I’ve taken part in for 2 years in a row now, and which led me to the discovery that I am indeed lactose intolerant, I’m reminding myself of the variety of vegan and vegetarian staple recipes I’ve collected over the years.
These Buffalo cauliflower tacos are of course only vegan if you skip or supplement the blue cheese sauce, but they’re still a very good staple.
- half a head of cauliflower pp, cut into florets
- 1 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 tbsp coconut (or if you’re not vegan, actual) butter
- 2 tbsp Frank’s hot sauce
- tortillas of choice (I prefer corn flour tacos)
- non-dairy yoghurt (if making blue cheese sauce)
- a good chunk of blue cheese (see above)
- avocado (optional)
- 1 celery stick, cut into thin 4 cm strips
- lettuce of choice
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees Celsius and line a baking tray with parchment.
Place the cauliflower florets into a bowl. It’s okay if there are many different shapes and sizes, this allows for different levels of cooking, textures and flavor. Toss in the olive oil so all your florets are evenly coated. Now spread out the florets on your lined baking tray and cook in the oven for about 25-30 minutes, until some of the florets have started to brown and gone crisp.
To make the sauce just mash together the blue cheese and non-dairy yoghurt with a fork. I like to add in a good helping of freshly ground black pepper for additional oomph.
When your cauliflower is almost done, melt your coconut or regular butter in a small sauce pan together with your hot sauce. Then toss the cauliflower in the sauce so all the florets are coated in the sauce.
To serve, place the lettuce and/ or avocado, if using, on your warm tortilla (I like to dry-grill mine), top with the cauliflower, sauce and then a few sticks of celery.
Be sure to have napkins at the ready because things are about to get drippy.
You can also make this with pressed and then crumbled tofu. Place a block of firm tofu on some paper towels on an oven tray or other flat surface. Top with more paper towels and place something heavy on them for 30 minutes. I like to use my Dutch oven for this.
When the tofu is pressed, in a bowl, crumble the tofu into small pieces. You’re going for what minced meat would look like once you’ve fried it into small pieces in a bolognese or similar. Lightly dust with some corn flour and fry in batches in neutral oil until crisp, before tossing to coat in the Buffalo butter sauce sauce.
More alternatives: chicken
Personally I don’t think it’s necessary to make this type of food with meat. The flavor of the hot sauce is so overpowering it’s not like you can tell what kind of protein you’re biting into.
But if you must: get yourself a chicken thigh per person. Cut into bite size chunks. Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pand and fry the chicken chunks until crisp and cooked through before tossing to coat in the Buffalo sauce.