Margarita Cauliflower

I've recently come to an important conclusion: cauliflower is the new "bar food". It's nutty, crunchy, comforting, and can be dressed up in an endless variety of ways. Move over fries! Cauliflower is here and wants a seat at the bar.

I'm now on a mission to develop some addicting bar snacks using cauliflower. First up in the series: this awesome Margarita Cauliflower, designed to go alongside margaritas and other Mexican-inspired beverages. It's bright and citrusy, yet also deep and roasty.

Oh, and most importantly, it's bathed in tequila!

In my opinion, the key to making cauliflower approachable is roasting. I like it raw, but it's not terribly exciting (and I'm sure it tastes like tree bark to people who don't love veggies as much as I do).

But something magical happens when you roast it at high temperature; it becomes tender, packed with flavor, and develops crisp edges that make it feel almost fried. Look at those gorgeous florets! I can honestly say that roasted cauliflower like this is just as indulgent and satisfying as fries.

These tasty browned surfaces and crispy edges are classic bar food! Don't get me wrong, I adore tortilla chips and sweet potato fries, but I try not to make a meal out of them (too often...). But I can inhale plates of roasted cauliflower, have that same sense of indulgent bar food, and not feel like a dehydrated salt block the day after.

This Margarita Cauliflower is salty and indulgent. Lime zest, tequila, and lime juice make it bright and exciting. I like serving it with some orange slices to really reinforce the margarita flavor profile, and adding a bit of cilantro to give it freshness.

You could really have fun with the garnishes here. Avocado? Pepitas? Quesco fresco? Go crazy! And of course this is equally delicious with white or purple cauliflower, or maybe a mix of the two.

Pair it with some margaritas and guac or salsa for an instant tequila bar vibe. It's great either alongside chips or instead of chips. Either way, it's an excellent happy hour snack!

Please share your creation so I can see how you've interpreted the concept! Tag "The Rogue Brussel Sprout" on Facebook or hashtag #theroguebrusselsprout on Instagram.

You need a margarita too! What about these Blackberry Coconut Margaritas for summer? Or maybe Ginger Margaritas for winter?

Thoughts About Ingredients
(These are all just suggestions, since rogue is more fun than recipe)
  • Cauliflower! Assume one head per person if it's a meal, or maybe half a head per person for robust snacks. Either white or purple (or a mix!) will work.
  • Oil. For your sheet tray. I like to use coconut oil or avocado oil, but use what you have.
  • Shot of tequila
  • Zest of a lime. One lime for each head of cauliflower.
  • Generous salt and pepper
  • Juice of a lime. One lime for each head of cauliflower.
  • Orange slices. Regular oranges or blood oranges, whatever is in season.
  • Fresh cilantro
  • Avocado?
  • Pepitas?
  • Queso fresco?
Thoughts About Method
(These are all just suggestions, be creative and make it yours)
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 and oil a large sheet tray.
  2. Cut your cauliflower into florets. For the bigger florets, cut them in halves or thirds for even cooking.
  3. Lay the cauliflower florets on the sheet tray in a single layer; they won't brown if they're overlapping.
  4. Roast at 450 for about 30-35 minutes until tender and browned.
  5. Remove the sheet tray from the oven and drizzle the cauliflower with tequila. Add lime zest and generous salt and pepper.
  6. Return it to the oven for another 5 minutes to cook off the tequila.
  7. Remove the sheet tray from the oven and drizzle the cauliflower with lime juice.
  8. Plate it up! Here, I've shown the cauliflower on a serving platter with orange slices and freshly chopped cilantro. But you could leave it on the sheet tray, put it on individual plates, or put it in a big serving bowl. Garnish it however you like.


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