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Thursday, April 12, 2012

Cauliflower Lentil Sloppy Joes with Coconut Slaw

When I saw The Food In My Beard's Cauliflower Taco post I knew I wanted in on that action.  Cauliflower as meat?  Love it.  I decided I would make cauliflower sloppy joes- weeks ago.  But these kids are a handful!  It seems I never have time to cook anymore, and when I do it needs to be something quick and tried and true.  As I continued to put this recipe off day after day, it grew- suddenly it wasn't just cauliflower sloppy joes, it was cauliflower lentil sloppy joes.  Carrots decided to hop into the mix, and celery the next day.  Then, when I finally found time to make this I had a mad craving for some coconut slaw.  And you should always, always listen to your gut.


Let's take a moment to go over what this dish has going for it.  First off- it's chock-full of nutrients.  It's got veggies galore- cauliflower, celery, bell pepper, carrots, cabbage, onions, garlic- and lentils, too.  It's slightly spicy, and because it's roasted the cauliflower imparts a wonderful caramelized nuttiness.  The warmth of this combined with the cool tanginess of the coconut slaw= a cornucopia of flavors that will make every one of your taste buds happy.

Cauliflower Lentil Sloppy Joes with Coconut SlawServes 4-6 (depending on how sloppy you're feeling)
Tip:  Prepare slaw before the Joes so it has time for the flavors to be fully absorbed


Coconut Slaw
1/8 cup full fat coconut milk
1/4 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 package coleslaw mix


Whisk first 4 ingredients well, removing any lumps.  Stir in slaw and refrigerate.

Cauliflower Lentil Sloppy Joes
1 head cauliflower cut to small florets
about 4 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and finely chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 tbsp taco seasoning
2 tbsp montreal steak seasoning
2 tbsp brown sugar
3 cloves garlic,minced
6 oz tomato paste
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
2 cups lentils (red or green,) cooked 

Chop the cauliflower into pea sized pieces.  Toss in a roasting dish with 2 tbsp olive oil and roast for 8-10 minutes, until golden brown.  Add remaining oil to large pot and sautee bell pepper, onion, carrot and celery until onion is translucent.  Add rest of ingredients listed except for lentils.  Combine well, then gently fold in roasted cauliflower crumbles and lentils.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.  Place on toasted buns and top with Coconut Slaw (above.)