Fried Romanesco Cauliflower with Au Jus over Grits

December 07, 2020

Grits is a staple southern soul food dish that can be enjoyed any time of the day. Soul Food is often misconstrued as unhealthy and heavy. This is untrue and a harmful general statement. Soul Food is more than just food, it is about history and roots. Every family has a different take on classic soul food dishes, which creates awesome varieties like sugared grits or savory grits. This recipe is a vegan and sustainable take of the classic heartwarming shrimp and grits dish. Romanesco cauliflower is also known as romanesco broccoli and can hold up to being battered and fried, all the while taking on the flavors of a savory au jus and savory creamy grits.


Fried Cauliflower
2 cups of vegetable oil or frying oil of choice
1 cup of all-purpose flour
1 tsp of Italian seasoning
½ teaspoon of onion powder
½ teaspoon of smoked paprika
½ teaspoon of garlic powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup of almond milk
1 head of romanesco cauliflower, broken up into florets
1 cup of panko flakes

Au Jus
1 tsp of oil
½ red onion, sliced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
.5 cup of water
.5 Cup of bbq sauce
1 tablespoon of dried parsley (optional)
Salt to taste

4 servings of prepared grits or polenta


Fried Romanesco Cauliflower

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a deep dutch oven over medium-low heat.
  2. In a bowl, mix together flour, Italian seasoning, onion powder, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and salt. Whisk in almond milk to form a thick batter.
  3. Dip florets into batter, making sure to coat all sides. Toss the coated floret in a bowl of panko crumbs
  4. Place coated florets into oil and fry until golden brown.
  5. Drain on a paper towel.

BBQ Au Jus

  1. Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Fry red onions for about 2 minutes. Add garlic and dried parsley and let fry for 1 minute.
  2. Add bbq sauce and water and mix. Let simmer for 10 minutes.


  1. Prepare grits according to the instructions of the package.


  1. Plate grits in a shallow bowl, add 3-5 pieces of fried romanesco cauliflower.
  2. Pour 4-6 tablespoons of bbq au jus over cauliflower and grits.

Recipe by Local Roots recipe contributor, Fati Son of Je Gbese, @jegbese

Rather have a taste first?

Local Roots Experiences are fun, pop-up events where we bring the farm to you!

Become a Harvest Club Pick Up Location

Are you a NY based cafe, bar, or neighborhood business? Become a Harvest Club pick up location and have community members come to your establishment each week to pick up their Local Roots harvest.