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Crispy Cauliflower Steaks with Lemon and Parmesan

Crispy Cauliflower Steaks with Lemon and Parmesan

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Servings: 4

No longer a neglected vegetable, cauliflower is now sharing the spotlight with kale and other popular brassicas. Here, the cauliflower is cut into thick “steaks,” tossed with a flavourful coating and lightly fried, then roasted in the oven until deliciously crisp. This dish can hold its own alongside the main course — or stand by itself as a vegetarian entrée.


  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 large head cauliflower, about 2 lb. (1 kg), cut crosswise into 4 slices
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/4 cups (1 3/4 oz./50 g) panko
  • 3/4 cup (3 oz./90 g) grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • Olive oil for frying
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • Mixed fresh herb leaves, such as flat-leaf parsley, basil and thyme, for serving


  • Preheat an oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the cauliflower slices and cook until tender but not mushy, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate and dry well.
  • In a shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs and mustard. In another shallow bowl, whisk together the panko, Parmesan, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper and the lemon zest.
  • Place a wire rack on a baking sheet. In a large fry pan over medium-high heat, pour in olive oil to a depth of 1/2 inch (12 mm) and heat until just beginning to smoke. Working in batches, dip the cauliflower slices in the egg mixture, allowing any excess to drip off. Then coat with the panko mixture, pressing so that it adheres. Fry the cauliflower, turning once, until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer the cauliflower to the rack-lined baking sheet and scatter the lemon slices around the cauliflower. Roast in the oven until the cauliflower is heated through and very crisp, about 5 minutes.
  • Transfer the cauliflower steaks and lemon slices to a serving platter. Sprinkle with more Parmesan, garnish with herb leaves and serve. Serves 4.
  • Williams Sonoma Test Kitchen

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