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Grilled Cauliflower with cashew cheese squiggles

Grilled Cauliflower with Cashew Cheese Squiggles

As two long-time vegetarians and vegans, our original forays into grilling were kind of demoralizing and embarrassing. The skill set of how to own that grill wasn’t exactly passed down to either of us and it was especially emasculating to my husband. I was kind enough to document his adventures in grilling on video and upload it onto YouTube.  I’m thoughtful like that.

In addition to his admirable ability of being able to make fun of himself, my husband is also a determined autodidact, so he made like a modern herbivorous caveman and taught himself how to grill by watching videos. What I have lost in recorded hijinks, I have gained in delicious grilled food galore. I thought that I may as well keep coming up with recipes to celebrate the milestone of one tenacious vegan learning to conquer the grill and that is how this recipe was born. I am loving grilling in aluminum foil packets because it locks in the flavorful juices and you only need to use minimal oil. (Check out my recipe for Pesto-Roasted Potatoes using the same method.)

The Grilled Cauliflower is fork-tender and meltingly delicious. The Cashew Cheese is rich and so unbelievably flavorful that you will want to eat it with a spoon. Together, they make for one impressive side dish or appetizer. If you are grill averse or it is not grilling weather, you can make this in a 425-degree oven, wrapping the cauliflower halves in parchment paper, cooking for 20 minutes on each side
.

Serves Four

First, start your cashews soaking 4 or so hours early or overnight.

1 cup raw, unsalted cashews
2 cups water

Start the grill and prepare the cauliflower.

1 medium-sized head cauliflower

Rinse the cauliflower, then cut the leaves and bottom stem off. Cut in half vertically and dry the halves with a clean kitchen towel.

1 T. olive oil
1/2 T. tamari or soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 t. dried basil
1 t. dried oregano
1/2 t. red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

In a small bowl or a cup, mix together the olive oil-spice blend (it’ll be thick) and then distribute evenly between the two cauliflower halves, rubbing the mix on with your hands and into the crevices.

Wrap each cauliflower half into its own tightly sealed heavy duty aluminum foil package so it is completely wrapped.

Grill one side down on a hot grill for 20 minutes; turn with tongs and grill the other side.

Meanwhile, make yourself some of this amazing Cashew Cheese.

Into your blender, add:

The cup of cashews, drained
2 cups low-sodium vegetable stock
1/2 cup roasted red bell pepper
Juice of one juicy lemon
2 - 3 cloves garlic, minced
3 T. nutritional yeast
2 t. cornstarch
1 t. onion powder
1/2 t. ground cumin
1 t. salt
1 capsule probiotic powder, removed from capsule

Blend, baby, blend, until it is very smooth. Stop if your blender starts to get too warm and let it cool down a bit. This may take a while!

When it is ready, pour the mix into a pot and cook over medium-low heat, whisking frequently, until it’s thickened but still pourable, about five minutes. Add vegetable stock a tablespoon at a time if you want it to be thinner; add a small bit of cornstarch if you want to thicken it up.

When your cauliflower is ready, remove from the foil (it’s hot, so be careful!). Spread some cashew cheese on the plate and over the top of the cauliflower. If you have leftover cashew cheese, just heat it up over medium-low heat, stirring frequently.

Enjoy!





2013, 2014, Vegan Street


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