Monday Feature: Lauren @ Vegology
Today’s guest post comes from Richmond blogger, Lauren, who writes at Vegology! If you haven’t checked out her blog, make sure you stop by for a visit, because she has tons of awesome recipes! We’re pretty sure her delicious strawberry snacks are going to be a summer staple!
Hello, I am Lauren from Vegology, and I am so happy to be a part of the Virginia is for Bloggers group. Vegology is a blog about trying new things, so my posts often serve as a travelog of my food adventures. Vegology started in my kitchen, where I researched and cooked with new-to-me ingredients, but it has traveled far beyond my tiny Richmond, VA kitchen in the almost two years since I wrote my first post. The search for new ingredients and cooking experiences can take you to some pretty fantastic places. Today, Vegology chronicles my adventures in cooking, dining, drinking, hiking, gardening and traveling.
While I have expanded the horizons of Vegology (and my own horizons as well), food has remained the focus of my blog. As a vegetarian of 4 years, I write about meatless food. One of my favorite things to do is take meat dishes and remake them as vegetarian friendly foods. I have posted several “Veggie Redux” recipes in the past, including Banh Mi, Bangers and Mash, Spicy Po’Boys, and Caldo Verde. So naturally I thought that my guest post for Virginia is for Bloggers should feature a brand new Southern Cooking Veggie Redux.
Virginia Bloggers, meet Vegetarian “Shrimp” and Grits.
Confession: I have never had real shrimp and grits. This veggie redux might taste nothing like the original. However, I can assure you that this spicy cauliflower “shrimp” and these creamy, cheesy yellow grits are a delightful combination. The cauliflower is tossed with Old Bay seasoning, olive oil, fresh garlic and lemon, and a touch of pepper, then it is roasted to spicy, crispy perfection. The yellow grits are simmered in light seasoning, then combined with a trio of dairy indulgences: cheese, butter and cream. A dash of hot sauce gives the grits enough edge to stand up to the feisty cauliflower. If you can’t already tell from this description, I’ll spell it out for you. This is a vegetarian remake, not a healthier or lighter remake. It’s a delicious treat with all of the comfort and none of the meat.
Fiancé tested and vegetarian approved, this dish is a winner. The recipe follows so you can recreate it at home, and if you do, drop me a line to let me know how it goes! You can check out my other adventures (and misadventures) at vegologyblog.com and @vegology on Twitter.
Vegetarian Cauliflower “Shrimp” and Grits
- 1 cup yellow grits
- 4 cups vegetable broth (or water)
- 3 Tablespoons butter
- 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup half and half
- 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce, plus more to taste
- 1 head cauliflower, chopped into florets
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 Tablespoons Old Bay seasoning
- 6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 green onions, sliced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
- Bring vegetable broth (or water) to a boil. Add yellow grits and cook until absorbed, 20-25 minutes.
- While grits are cooking, toss cauliflower with Old Bay, olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and black pepper. Spread cauliflower mixture out on a baking sheet and roast 20 minutes in the preheated oven.
- When grits have absorbed the cooking liquid, turn heat down to low and add butter, cheese, and half and half. Remove from heat and add hot sauce, salt, and pepper to taste.
- When cauliflower is browned and crispy on the edges, remove from oven and toss with sliced green onions.
- Serve cauliflower over grits in shallow dishes. Add hot sauce as desired.