BUFFALO CAULIFLOWER SLIDERS

buffalo-cauliflower-sliders-1
Ok, so, I know I’m on a bit of a cauliflower kick lately. First this Sriracha Honey Cauliflower Pizza, then the Creamy Cauliflower Mac and Cheese, and now this.

But really, I’m not even sorry. These Buffalo Cauliflower Sliders are that good.

This recipe was a serious labor of love for me. Lucky for you though, I nailed it eventually! The first few rounds resulted in deliciously flavored sliders with a gross mashed potato-like consistency. Not cool. Also no salvageable, it turned out.
buffalo-cauliflower-sliders-3
There were two big changes that made these sliders eventually awesome. First, roasting the cauliflower in the oven is key. It softens it up and gives great flavor, all while drying out a lot of the excess moisture it secretly holds. That extra moisture = mushy burgers.

The second thing was just giving it a light pulse in a food processor instead of full-on ricing it. You could even achieve the same result with some dedication and a sharp knife. That’s the ticket to Texture City.
buffalo-cauliflower-sliders-4
Fold in a few other goodies, and these babies are ready to fry. Delicious buffalo sauce comes together in seconds. Assembly is simple and the results are absurdly satisfying. Tons of flavor and great texture make this the ultimate snack. The cauliflower is filling enough to make a few of these a whole meal.

Win-win!
buffalo-cauliflower-sliders-2

BUFFALO CAULIFLOWER SLIDERS

Makes about 10 sliders

Ingredients
For the Patties:
1 small head cauliflower
1 tbsp. vegetable oil, plus more for frying the patties (about 1/2 cup)
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1-2 tbsp. hot sauce
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs

For the Sauce:
1/2 cup hot sauce
1 stick butter

10 slider buns
lettuce, sliced tomato, and ranch dressing, for topping

Instructions
Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. Roughly cut or break the cauliflower head into florets. Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet and toss with 1 tbsp. of vegetable oil. Roast the cauliflower in the oven for 35 minutes, tossing with a spatula halfway through. Remove from the oven and let cool to room temperature, so it is no longer steaming.

Add the cauliflower florets, blue cheese crumbles, garlic powder, and hot sauce to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse about 5 times, until there are no larger pieces of cauliflower left, but so the mixture is still courser than rice. Move the mixture to a mixing bowl. Use a rubber spatula to fold in the beaten egg and panko breadcrumbs.

Heat a skillet over medium heat. Once the pan is warm, add the vegetable oil so that it is about 1/2 inch deep. Use your hands to make patties from the cauliflower mixture, about 3 inches wide and 1/2 inch thick. Gently place in the oil, careful not to overcrowd the pan. Fry until each side is a deep golden brown, about 4 minutes per side. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.

While the patties drain, place the butter in a small bowl and microwave until melted. Add the hot sauce to the melted butter and mix with a fork until well combined. Set up your slider buns with a dollop of ranch dressing, a lettuce leaf, and a tomato slice. Individually toss each patty in the sauce, coating both sides, and place directly on the bun. Enjoy immediately.