Salt and Pepper Cauliflower Bites; a healthy take on a classic chinese dish!
What’s your ultimate takeaway craving? For me it has to be anything Chinese, Thai or Japanese. And if we treat ourselves to some weekend takeout the first thing on our order is always Salt & Pepper Chicken. The whole family absolutely loves this dish (except the baby, we haven’t yet introduced him to the delights of takeaway!). There’s something about the delicious blend of salt, pepper, garlic and spices that makes it so incredibly moreish.
So in an effort to save some money AND get my family eating as healthy as possible I tried to recreate my own Salt & Pepper Bites, but made with cauliflower instead of chicken!
Cauliflower can be a tricky veg to convince fussy eaters to try. When most people think about cauliflower, they think of pungent over-boiled bland cauliflower florets. Baked cauliflower has a much milder taste. I also find that cooking with very fresh cauliflower keeps the taste quite mild. The older the cauliflower is the stronger it seems to taste.
So cauliflower haters fear not. These bites honestly taste nothing like that over-boiled cauliflower from your childhood! The mix of five spice powder, garlic, salt and pepper, together with the breadcrumbs, gives a lovely delicately flavoured coating. Have I convinced you to give it a try yet?!
The recipe calls for fresh breadcrumbs but dried is fine too. Panko breadcrumbs would work really well too as they are super crunchy! These bites won’t keep well so its best to eat them warm straight from the oven. Enjoy!
- 1 medium cauliflower
- 3 slices / 100g bread
- ½ tsp chinese five spice
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 eggs (use non dairy milk for a vegan alternative)
- 30g flour
- Preheat the oven to 200c / 400f. Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper and lightly grease with oil or butter.
- Cut the cauliflower into florets. The size is up to you, just remember if they are very large or very small this will affect the cooking time.
- Using a food processer, blitz the bread until it reaches a small crumb consistency. Add the chinese five spice, garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste and blitz again until it has all combined. Transfer the breadcrumbs onto a large plate.
- Spread the flour out on to another large plate and crack the eggs into a bowl and beat with a fork.
- Next make a little assembly line on your kitchen counter. Each of the cauliflower florets need to be rolled in flour, dipped in egg, coated in breadcrumbs and placed onto the baking dish. Once all the cauliflower florets have been rolled, dipped and coated, bake them in the oven for 12-15 minutes or until they have cooked through and are nicely browned on the outside.
- Serve immediately with some sweet chilli sauce for dipping.