I’m always looking for new ways to invent recipes and have fallen in love with the versatility of cauliflower. When I’m craving a starchy, potato-based dish, cauliflower is my go-to ingredient. These cheesy “tater tots” are like a risotto ball/ hash brown/ zucchini fritter hybrid, without the high carb count. For added crunch, I recommend coating them in Panko breadcrumbs (use an egg wash to bind) but these came out crispy and delicious without.
What You’ll Need:
Makes 15-18 tots
- 1/2 head of cauliflower
- 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 egg
- 1 cup flour for coating, with 1 tbsp reserved
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
- Parsley & shredded parmesan for garnish (optional)
- 1 cup canola oil
- 1 large deep skillet
Rinse the cauliflower and cut it into small florets. Pulse it in a food processor until it resembles fluffy rice. If you don’t have a food processor, get out the cheese grater! Be forewarned: This takes a lot of time and makes a big mess, but it’s worth it in the end. Scouts honor.
Place a dish towel in a large bowl and dump the cauliflower rice into the bowl. Microwave for 1-2 minutes, then remove and let cool. When it’s cool enough to touch, gather the towel around the cauliflower and ring out as much excess water as you can.
Remove the towel and place the cauliflower into the bowl. Add 1 tbsp flour, shredded mozzarella, dried oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Crack 1 egg into the mixture and fold with your hands until everything is incorporated.
Put about 1 cup of flour in a separate shallow bowl. Use the palm of your hands to gently roll the cauliflower mixture into little balls. Roll them in the flour, dust of excess coating and set aside. Repeat with the rest of the mixture.
Heat up 1 cup of canola oil in a large deep skillet on medium-high heat. When the oil is hot enough (drop a little flour in to test and make sure it sizzles) use the tongs to gently place cauliflower tots into the oil. Make sure there is enough room between each so that they don’t stick together. After 1-2 minutes or until golden brown, use the tongs to flip the tots and fry the other side. When the tot starts to look delicious, remove it and put it onto a sheet tray lined with a paper towel. Repeat with leftover tots.
To serve: Sprinkle with more salt and pepper, if needed. Garnish with finely chopped parsley and grated parmesan.