Light Meals, Snacks

Buffalo Cauliflower Wings & Ranch Dressing

This dish is a real crowd-pleaser, and is fantastic served in bowls that can be passed around and shared, complete with a cooling ranch dressing on the side to dip your ‘wings' in. As well as being increibly moreish, an added bonus is that you don‘t have any bones to discard!

I love this classic vegan snack so much, I sometimes transform it into a main dish by serving it with a crisp green salad and slices of celery, which also work wonderfully with the tasty ranch dressing. I use cashews to make the dressing, but you could use shop-bought mayo and add the extra ingredients for flavour. Just don't forget the dill, because it's essential!

As well as being vegan, this dish benefits from being completely gluten-free, thanks to the chickpea flour used in the batter. Try this recipe, and your friends and family will be begging you to make it every time they drop by.

SERVES:
04-08

Ingredients

1 head cauliflower, broken into bite-sized florets

1 tbsp vegan butter

Hot sauce, to taste (I like Frank's Red Hot Sauce)

For the batter

¾ cup chickpea flour

½ cup plain dairy-free yogurt

½ cup dairy-free milk

1 tbsp smoked paprika

1 tsp ground cumin

1 clove garlic, grated

For the ranch dressing

1 cup cashews, soaked in boiling water overnight, or for 1 hour

1 chunky clove garlic, finely chopped

Juice of 1 lemon

1 tbsp apple cider or white wine vinegar

1 tsp salt

2-3 tbsp dill, roughly chopped

4 spring onions, thinly sliced

To serve

Green salad with dill, coriander or chives

Avocado

2-4 celery sticks, or chopped celery

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/Gas 4, and line two baking trays with parchment.
  2. Add all the batter ingredients to a large bowl, whisk until combined, and set aside. If you feel it‘s a little thick, add more milk – it needs to be the consistency of double cream.
  3. Add the drained, rinsed cashews to a blender with the garlic, lemon juice, vinegar, salt, and ¾ of a cup of water. Blend until silky smooth.
  4. If you'd like a thinner dressing, add a little more water, until you reach the desired consistency. Taste for seasoning, and add more vinegar, lemon juice or salt as needed.
  5. Pour the dressing into a bowl, stir in the dill and spring onions, and place in the fridge to chill until you‘re ready to serve.
  6. Add the cauliflower florets to the batter, and stir to coat completely. Using a spoon or fork, remove each floret, allow the excess batter to drip back into the bowl, and arrange on your lined baking trays.
  7. Place the trays in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, before turning the cauliflower and cooking for a further 10 minutes. When ready, the florets should be golden and charred in places.
  8. Meanwhile, place a small saucepan over a low heat and add the hot sauce and butter. Gently melt the butter, stirring to fully incorporate the hot sauce.
  9. Brush the cooked 'wings' with the hot buttery sauce to coat, and return them to the oven for a few more minutes.
  10. Serve the 'wings' to a crowd in a large bowl, with the ranch dressing, more hot sauce and some celery sticks on the side. Alternatively, to turn them into a light meal, serve with a green salad, avocado slices and chopped celery.

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