If you ever need to change somebody’s opinion about cauliflower, then this is the recipe for it. It is crispy, spicy, sticky, and delicious. Of course, you can adjust the spiciness level according to your taste, but I love the spice, and I have listed the amounts of chili I used.
The sauce is one of the things that makes the dish enjoyable and gives it a lot of flavor, but the most essential part is the crispy-battered cauliflower itself. The secret in the batter is vodka!
Don’t worry, there will be no alcohol left after frying, but it gives the batter extra crispiness that can stand the sauce and will not be soaked within 5 minutes. In fact, since I had some leftovers the last time I cooked this dish, then I had it for breakfast the next day, and it was still crispy in some parts, even after standing in the fridge overnight.
I always love to serve steamed rice with this cauliflower, but it is also good on its own as a snack.
Crispy Cauliflower in a Sweet & Spicy Sauce
Cooking time: 40 minutes
For the cauliflower:
1 medium cauliflower
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup cornstarch
½ tsp baking powder
½ cup water
½ cup vodka
A pinch of salt
Oil, for frying
For the sauce:
1 tsp grated ginger
1 red chili, chopped
1 tsp sesame oil
½ cup soy sauce
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
¼ cup mirin
2 tbsp coconut sugar
2 dried chilies
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water
Spring onion, to serve
Cut the cauliflower to bite-sized pieces.
Heat the oil in a bottom of a small saucepan. The oil should be about 2 inches deep and very hot, so that the cauliflower wouldn’t absorb too much of it during cooking time.
Mix the cornstarch, flour, baking powder, and salt, then add water and vodka and mix everything to a batter. It will be quite runny, don’t worry about it.
Dip the cauliflower pieces into the batter, let the excess drip off and fry the pieces for 5-6 minutes. Do not overcrowd the pan while cooking and turn the pieces around occasionally, so they would cook evenly. Using the slotted spoon, transfer the cauliflower pieces to drain on paper towel.
At the same time, you can already start preparing the sauce. Fry the ginger and onion in the sesame oil on the medium heat. After 5 minutes add soy, rice wine vinegar, mirin, and sugar straight to the pan, also crumble up the dried chilies.
In a small bowl mix 1 tbsp cornstarch with 2 tbsp water, add it to the sauce and stir until the sauce thickens.
If all of the cauliflower is fried and the sauce ready, then mix them and sprinkle with chopped spring onion. Serve just like that as a snack or as a main with steamed rice.
By Kadri Raig
Kadri is a food blogger and yoga teacher from Estonia. She loves healthy food and cooking and for her, these two are often the same thing. Cooking meals from scratch, you know exactly what goes in it and even without holding back with sugar or fat we end up using a lot less compared to ready-made frozen stuff from the supermarket.
She does love to spend time in the kitchen, but most of her recipes are simple and don’t take more than 20 minutes of active cooking time. She thinks that everybody can find time to cook healthy food at home, it is just a question of planning. "I work in an office full time, teach yoga 7-8 hours a week and write a blog. So if I manage to cook most of my meals, then so do you!"
Connect with Kadri and enjoy many more of her delicious healthy recipes on her website here: http://www.kahvliga.ee/.
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