Tag Archives: game day

This Fiery Korean Gochujang Cauliflower Popcorn is Comfort Food at Its Finest

Gochujang, the fermented Korean hot pepper paste, has gained popularity by way of recipes featuring grilled proteins, like chicken, beef and pork. However, this recipe brings you that umami bite of sweet and spicy flavour with a veggie spin: lightly battered cauliflower popcorn bites. No hard and fast rules apply here, serve this on game night, as an appetizer or side dish.

Korean Gochujang Cauliflower Popcorn

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients:

2 tsp vegetable oil (plus more for frying)
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ cup gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)
3 Tbsp ketchup
2 Tbsp white vinegar or cider vinegar
2 Tbsp honey
2 Tbsp water
1 cup all-purpose flour
⅓ cup potato starch or cornstarch
¼ cup rice flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
¾ cup water (approx.)
2 eggs, whisked
1 small head cauliflower, cut into small florets (8 cups)
1 tsp toasted sesame seeds (optional)
Greek yogurt or sour cream for dipping (optional)

Tip: Rice flour and potato starch are common ingredients in a Korean pantry, the combination will lighten and aerate the batter. Look for them in an Asian market or bulk store.

Tip: Gochujang is a fermented Korean hot pepper paste; and while shelf-stable when you purchase it, please refrigerate after opening.

Directions:

1. Heat enough oil in your largest and widest pot to reach 1-inch high over medium to medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reaches 350°F. Don’t have a deep-fry thermometer? Either add a cube of bread to test the oil (it should fry quickly to golden) or dip end of a wooden spoon to see if bubbles start forming.

2. Meanwhile, make the sauce. Heat 2 tsp oil in a small saucepan. Add garlic and cook, stirring for 30 seconds. Stir in gochujang, ketchup, vinegar, honey and water and simmer for 1 minute; set aside.

Related: Eddie Jackson’s Gochujang Short Ribs Are Your New All-Star Dish

3. Whisk flour, potato starch, rice flour, salt and baking soda. Whisk in water and eggs, to make a slightly thickened batter. Add all the cauliflower, stirring to coat; the batter should be just thick enough to coat, while easily dripping off the floret. Add more water if needed.

4. Carefully drop lightly battered cauliflower into the hot oil using a fork, one at a time to achieve popcorn-sized bites (dropping them in groups will create lumps and will not produce a crispy batter).

Tip: Cauliflower is made up of a ton of water and continues to steam when cooked and needs to be fried twice. The first fry steams, while the second fry will lighten and crisp the combination of potato starch and rice flour.

5. Fry, with a spider or slotted spoon, turning until golden and crispy, 2-3 minutes. Drain on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining cauliflower. Once everything had been fried, fry again until browned and crispy, 3-4 minutes and drain on a rack.

Related: This Korean Sweet and Sour Seaweed Salad is the Perfect BBQ Side Dish

6. Rewarm the sauce until loosened. Transfer half of the cauliflower in a large bowl and drizzle with enough sauce to just lightly coat, tossing quickly. Transfer to a serving plate and repeat with the remaining cauliflower and gochujang sauce mixture. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve with sour cream or Greek yogurt if desired.

Tip: Serve at room temperature and avoid reheating in the oven; it will steam and soften the cauliflower.

Like Soo’s fiery gochujang cauliflower popcorn? Try her pork banh mi burgers or asparagus and mushroom udon.

super bowl menu roger mooking

Roger Mooking’s Ultimate Super Bowl Menu

Maybe you like football, maybe you don’t. But if a snack-centred event featuring classic comfort foods sounds like your idea of fun, then it’s time to add Super Bowl Sunday to your annual calendar of delicious events. Here, chef and Chopped Canada judge Roger Mooking shares his tips for hosting a superb Super Bowl Party.

888_Sweet-Potato-Wedges-with-Chipotle-Sauce

Pass the snacks
One of Chef Roger’s favourite Super Bowl memories was watching the 2016 game at his cousin’s place, while his cousin screamed and jumped around the TV. “The whole family knows he is a Broncos fanatic so we all went there to watch him,” he says. “It was one of the most hilarious things I did last year and will never forget it.” That energy is what makes the day, so don’t quash it by asking fanatics to sit down for dinner. “Finger foods and hand-held foods are always good because people tend to get excited, and want to nibble through the stress and excitement throughout the game,” says Roger.

Honey-Glazed Ham

Roger recommends:
Sweet Potato Wedges with Chipotle Sauce
Honey-Glazed Ham
Red Cabbage and Green Apple Slaw
Mini Apple Pie Pockets

Prepare for a thirsty crowd
A mix of alcoholic and non-alcoholic brews and caffeinated and non-caffeinated drinks, will allow guests of all ages to cater to their own energy and entertainment requirements. If you’re serving booze, Roger recommends taking everyone’s keys as they come in the door. “Call a cab if people get too tipsy or are too worked up to drive,” he says.

Ginger Beer

Roger recommends serving:
Chocolate Malted Milkshakes
Ice cold light beer with lime wedges
Ginger beer
Iced coffee with condensed milk

“Make a coffee, add ice and drizzle some sweetened condensed milk in it,” says Rogers. “Stir it all up just before you drink and there will be enough sugar and caffeine in there to turn the most docile sports fan into Mike Tyson backed into a corner.”

iced coffee

Game day plan
Stock up on side plates and serviettes, since guests will invariably go back for seconds (and thirds), and some of the tastiest game day treats the messiest. Avoid a post-season house slump by keeping a garbage nearby so it’s easy to tidy up during commercial breaks.

Looking for more Super Bowl ideas? Try Patricia Heaton’s Best Game Day Recipes.

Cory Vitiello’s Ultimate Game Day Menu

Cory Vitiello’s goal for 2016 is to stay on the path of clean, healthy eating. But even those who set strict objectives have to allow themselves one cheat day. For this Chef In Your Ear expert, it happens to be football’s biggest night.

“This the one day where you can feel like you hit rock bottom with your dietary choices and be okay with it,” Cory explains. “It’s like New Years. You know you’re going to wake up lying on your bathroom floor face down in a pool of regurgitated sauce and Cheez Whiz and it’s okay!”

Here are the items Cory craves the most on game day.

nachos

California Style Nachos
“It’s the healthy kind,” he says. He prefers his nachos with lots of black beans and fresh veggies with fresh cilantro on top and a little bit of cheese. “I mean, you can’t have a Super Bowl party without nachos.” Because Cory is opting to eat less meat this year, he’s skipping out on adding beef.

Try a similar recipe: Whole Wheat Nachos with Corn

USA --- Spicy Chicken Wings --- Image by © 2/John E. Kelly/Ocean/Corbis
Chicken Wings
Just like nachos, chicken wings are a quintessential food item on game day. Cory admits he’s a simple guy when it comes to these poultry pleasures. “I fry them at a low heat for a very long time until they just get crispy and I toss a bit of salt and pepper, maybe a tiny bit of hot sauce.” Oh, and don’t forget the ranch dressing!

Try a similar recipe: Roast Chicken Wings

Hot Italian Sausages
Cory plays by the books and loves sticking to other classics like Italian sausages. Whether you prefer to grill, bake or fry, you can’t go wrong!
Try a similar recipe: Sausage with Caramelized Onions and Pepper

Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Pinwheel Cookie

Chocolate Chip Cookies
To satisfy his sweet tooth (and boy, does he have one!), Cory makes sure chocolate chip cookies are on the menu. These warm, gooey treats are easy to bake by the dozens. “If somebody showed up to a party with a platter of cookies, I’d eat 95 per cent of them myself.” Cory’s secret weapon: a dash of Chile de árbol.

Try a similar recipe: Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies

bourbon
Bourbon
Gone are the days of chugging back tall boys. These days, Cory keeps it classy with a glass of bourbon on the rocks. “I like a good slow drinking bourbon. It’s a gentleman’s drink. We’re not kids anymore. One drink every quarter is responsible,” he says. If you want the best of both worlds, there’s even a cocktail that combines bourbon and beer. Who knew?

Try the recipe: The End Zone

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