Kitchen Adventures: A different kind of popcorn

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Food column by Becca Owsley

By Becca Owsley

Sometimes food can surprise you.

A dish doesn’t turn out as well as you hoped. Sad surprise. Other times, you find that something you weren’t expecting to enjoy is wonderful. Glad surprise.

The disappointment often happens when a dessert’s appearance is knock-your-socks-off special, only to find it did not really taste good at all. Or when I tried to make it, the result was a messy disaster.

The surprising joy often happens when a simple vegetable turns into something fabulous.

One night during a weekly gathering of friends, I made an amazing discovery, Cauliflower Popcorn.

Yes, you read that correctly. It is the most delectable vegetable snack dish I ever put in my mouth.

When it was placed on the table, we all looked at it like, “Oh, it’s just cauliflower.”

Moira Taylor, who made the dish, promised it was wonderful and that her daughters love it.

Our taste buds corrected us and said, “Wow, it’s cauliflower.”

It was addicting, just like popcorn. We couldn’t stop eating it.

The best part about this recipe is its simplicity. Toss in the oil and spices, cook and eat. Then prepare for an unexpected treat.

Taylorsaid she doesn’t make her version exactly like the recipe and I made mine the way she did. Instead of garlic salt, she uses seasoned salt and she doesn’t sprinkle it with cheese.

While it’s great as a snack, it may be a good substitute for a snack-type of side dish such as chips or fries. It could pair well with sandwiches or burgers.

According to the National Cancer Institute, cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable and is being studied for possible anti-cancer effects with some types of the disease.

Often, I eat my vegetables smothered in cheese or heavy butter and I wonder if this method is healthier than my usual methods of preparation.

I honestly have no idea if this version is healthier than regular popcorn as a snack or a way to get kids to eat their vegetables. All I know is the taste was better than I thought and it’s easy to eat an entire bowl in one sitting.

Not that I did that, but it would be easy to do.

Becca Owsley can be reached at 270-505-1741 or bowsley@thenewsenterprise.com.


Cauliflower Popcorn


1 large head of cauliflower, broken into small florets

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 teaspoon garlic salt

1 tablespoon grated parmesan cheese


Place cauliflower in a greased 15-by-10-by-1-inchbaking pan. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle with garlic salt; toss to coat. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 15-18 minutes or until tender, stirring once. Sprinkle with cheese.