I am going to admit something today, Roomie #1’s restricted diet can be hard for me sometimes. I don’t have a problem with her vegetarianism on it principles nor does she preach or try to convert me. She is really great about it actually and never makes a big deal about it. I just find it hard to relate to. I love to eat everything. Seriously, give me anything and I’ll try it once. I don’t make any promises that I’ll like it but I will try.
It is clear, the issue isn’t her, it’s me.
My favorite activity, my best way of showing people I care about them, is feeding people. I love to see the look on a person I love’s face when they bite into sometime I made for them that they absolutely love. That is the best gift you can give me. Honestly.
I have always had a vegetarian to cook for in some form. Way back when, it was Roomie #1 when we were in high school. Then, in college, I had another veggie to feed. Now, it’s Roomie #1 again. Sometimes, I struggle to find a recipe that I can make for everyone. I want to have a big, filling dinner that isn’t the standard vegetarian fare – pasta or curry. There is the added layer that she doesn’t eat mushrooms so meaty portobellos are out as a substitute. I am not a huge fan of soy meat substitutes so I try to steer clear of those too. That doesn’t leave all that much of an overlap.
One way I have found of sharing my love of good food with my dear veggies has been to make vegetarian versions of my favorite snacks, tailgating, and bar foods. These don’t have to be complete meals and are perfect for sharing. This recipe is a great one because you can make a big batch of the sauce and toss anything you want in it — even meat if you have any staunch carnivores around — while keeping a meat-free vegetarian option. Everyone gets to share the same meal but have exactly what they want! Compromise! I love this dish because it is spicy and crunchy and messy and wonderful, just like my beloved chicken wings.
Find a way of sharing something unexpected with someone. It could be a vegetarian version of a classic meaty snack or it could be something completely non-food related. I don’t know, share a new book with a TV watcher or take someone who doesn’t get outside much on an easy hike.
Whatever it is, find a gap to bridge. You will be surprised how easy it can be! ~ Molly
- 1/2 head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- salt & pepper, to taste
- 1-2 tbsp olive oil
- 3 tbsp butter
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 tbsp worchestershire sauce
- 2 cups hot sauce, Frank’s Red Hot or Texas Pete
- Preheat oven to 400*; toss cauliflower with olive oil, cumin, salt, & pepper; arrange on a baking sheet; bake 15 minutes, until beginning to get brown and crispy but still firm
- Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan, melt the butter; add the garlic and saute until golden; add hot sauce and worcestershire; heat to a simmer; reduce to low heat to keep warm
- Remove cauliflower from the oven; toss with sauce; broil on high 4-6 minutes, until the sauce caramelizes
- For the full chicken wing experience, serve with ranch or blue cheese, carrot sticks, and celery…and of course cold beer!