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Bang Bang Cauliflower Foolproof Air Fryer by Louise Kenney (Quadrille, £14) Photography ©Rita Platts
August 2023
Reading time 2 Minutes

Here the humble cauliflower is made into a surprisingly special dish

This is perfect for sharing. Crunchy, salty, sweet and spiked with chilli, you will devour it in minutes.
Preparation time:
20 minutes
Cooking time:
30 minutes
  • 1 x 400–500g cauliflower, leaves removed and florets separated
  • 130g plain flour
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp sweet smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • Pinch of freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 220ml milk of your choice
  • 100g panko breadcrumbs
  • Sunflower or vegetable cooking oil spray
  • Juice of 1 lime, plus lime wedges
  • to serve
  • 1 tbsp sriracha
  • 4 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 red chillies, finely chopped
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • small bunch of fresh coriander, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds

Cut the cauliflower florets into even-sized pieces – about 2cm each.

In a bowl, mix together the flour, garlic powder, smoked paprika, salt and pepper, then whisk in the toasted sesame oil and milk until you have a smooth, thick batter.

Put the panko breadcrumbs into a deep baking tray (this will make coating the cauliflower easier).

Dunk the cauliflower florets into the batter, then roll each one in the panko breadcrumbs until all the pieces are coated.

Preheat the air fryer to 200C.

Spray the basket with a little cooking oil, then place half the cauliflower florets (or as many as you can comfortably fit in) in a single layer, into the basket. Air-fry for 15 minutes, gently shaking halfway through to encourage all the sides to crisp up. Keep warm under a clean tea towel while you cook the second batch.

Meanwhile, mix together the lime juice, sriracha, sweet chilli sauce, red chillies, spring onions, coriander and sesame seeds to make a textured sauce.

Once all the cauliflower is cooked, arrange on a platter and spoon over the sauce. Serve immediately, with lime wedges for squeezing over.

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