Spicy Cauliflower Wings

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 8 to 10 servings
One bite of these spicy and hot cauliflower wings, which are based on Nashville-style hot chicken, and you may never go back to traditional chicken wings ever again. The key is the Louisiana-style hot sauce made from pepper, cayenne and sharp vinegar.



  1. Preheat the oven to 250˚ F. Set a rack on a rimmed baking sheet and place in the oven. Whisk the milk, eggs and hot sauce in a medium bowl. Stir together the flour, 1 tablespoon salt and 2 teaspoons black pepper in another medium bowl. In a separate medium heatproof bowl, stir together the melted butter, brown sugar, cayenne, paprika, garlic powder and 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper.
  2. Fill a medium saucepan halfway with vegetable oil. Heat the oil over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350˚ F. Working in batches of about 8 florets at a time, toss the cauliflower in the flour mixture, then dip in the milk mixture, then dredge again in the flour mixture, allowing the excess to fall off between each step. Fry until deep golden brown, carefully turning as needed, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove the cauliflower with a spider or a slotted spoon and transfer to the baking sheet in the oven; keep warm while you fry the remaining cauliflower. 
  3. When all the cauliflower is fried, carefully ladle about 1 cup of the frying oil into the melted butter mixture and stir. (It will sizzle slightly.) Working in batches, add the fried cauliflower to the hot spiced oil, then remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a platter. Spoon 2 to 3 more tablespoons of the spiced oil over all the florets. Serve with pickles, hot honey and more hot sauce.