Crunchy, golden brown, cauliflower that’s baked, not fried. All wrapped up with crunchy veggies and drizzled with a spicy gochujang dressing. This is a delicious vegetarian weeknight meal and the method works with lots of others veggies.
For the crunchy cauliflower:
1 small head cauliflower (or 1/2 a large one), broken down into bite sized florets
1/3 C all purpose flour
1/3 C cornstarch
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp sesame seeds
2 tsp gochujang paste
1/2 C club soda
3 T canola oil
1 head butter lettuce, washed, dried, and leaves separated (or any tender leafy lettuce)
shredded red cabbage and sliced scallions to garnish
For the spicy gochujang dressing:
1/3 C plain yogurt
1/3 C mayonnaise
1 T gochujang paste
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp lime juice (from about a half a lime)
1 tsp honey
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Preheat your oven to 425°F.
Place cauliflower and 1 tablespoon of water in a large, microwave safe bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on high for 3-4 minutes, or until the cauliflower is just barely tender. Drain the cauliflower in a colander and wipe any moisture from the bowl with a paper towel. Transfer drained cauliflower back into the bowl.
In a small bowl (or large measuring cup), whisk together the flour, cornstarch, kosher salt, baking powder, and sesame seeds. Pull out two tablespoons of this mixture and sprinkle it over the cauliflower. Toss to coat evenly. Whisk the club soda and gochujang paste into the remaining flour mixture until completely smooth. It should be the consistency of pancake batter.
Pour the oil onto a rimmed baking sheet and transfer to the hot oven. Let it heat up for about five minutes.
Meanwhile, pour the batter over the cauliflower, and toss to coat evenly.
Remove the hot sheet pan from the oven and dump the battered cauliflower into one even layer. Bake for 20 minutes. Flip. Bake for another 15 minutes, or until the cauliflower is golden brown and crunchy.
While the cauliflower bakes, whisk all dressing ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Assemble each lettuce wrap with a few pieces of cauliflower, some shredded cabbage, sliced scallions, and a drizzle of gochujang dressing. Serve immediately.
Feel free to substitute sriracha or sambal olek for gochujang, but make sure to taste for spice levels.
The cauliflower will naturally release from the pan when it has crisped up, so if it resists, just let it cook for five more minutes before flipping.
Keywords: baked crunchy cauliflower, vegetarian lettuce wraps, easy crunchy cauliflower, vegetarian weeknight dinner