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Thursday
Mar292012

Crumbed Cauliflower

I have had a few battles introducing vegetables to my children as toddlers and this dish was recommended to me by an Eastern European friend, Mimi - it worked a treat! Kids love anything crumbed don't they!

See below for how to cook schnitzel or crumbed fish also. Favourite side sish for these Celeriac Remoulade.

Pictured: Crumbed Cauliflower

½ cauliflower – sliced lengthways for as wide a piece as possible, a few mm’s thick
¼ cup plain flour
1 egg, beaten
½ cup dried crumbs - panko* crumbs are my favourite and for extra crunch I sometimes add some rice crumbs – good for the cauliflower especially

Amounts will vary for the above depending on how much cauliflower you would like to cook. Add more where necessary.

You can buy shnitzels ready made in butchers and supermarkets, or ask the butcher to prepare them for you - choosing either chicken, pork or veal. Any fish fillets will work well that are boned and even-sized plus not too thick - snapper, flathead for example - speak to the fishmonger for suggestions.

The process is the same for crumbing anything from this cauliflower dish to schnitzels or fish; place flour, egg and crumbs into separate bowls (flat ones are best) -
1.    dip the sliced cauliflower(pork, veal or chicken shnitzel/fish fillets) into the flour first covering both sides, shake off excess
2.    dip the floured cauliflower into the egg mix, shake off excess
3.    dip lastly into the crumb mix and cover completely in crumbs, patting it in

A trick to keeping at least one hand clean it to use one hand for placing the cauliflower into the flour and the other for the egg and crumbs only.

Heat some light olive oil or vegetable oil in a wide fry pan to cover the bottom entirely, med –high heat. Once it it hot enough, place the cauliflower (or schnitzels/fish) in the pan and cook 1 min each side at least – til golden brown basically. If it is taking a long time the heat may not be high enough, or if browns/burns really fast the heat may be too high, so keep an eye on the first batch to adjust the temperature. The cauliflower is best cooked at medium heat to allow the raw ingredient to cook through, and depending on how thick you sliced it. I like to cook schnitzels and fish at a high heat and fast as they tend to need flash frying to keep fresh and moist.

Season each side once golden.

For a healthier cooking method you can try grilling or baking in a hot oven with a spray of oil.

You can vary flavours for a more adult taste wherever you like – add some smoked paprika to the flour and some fresh herbs (or dried) to the crumbs. Or some parmesan to the crumb mix etc.

I like to season after cooking however with a small amount of sea salt and some pepper.

When cooking schnitzels or fish I use panko* crumbs only, no rice crumbs.

*panko crumbs are Japanese dried bread crumbs that are super crunchy – you can find them in asian stores and sometimes at the fishmongers (like Rose Bay De Costi’s).