“I’m not a chef, I’m Italian”- David Rocco

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Nonna's Fried Cauliflower

Buongiorno ! Today I will be serving a delicious savory cauliflower pancake. 

Il Contorno (side dishes)

As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, cauliflower is one of my favorite vegetables. When I taste cauliflower, no matter how it is prepared, the taste always bring back memories of my Nonna’s fried cauliflower.

Until recently, I was in charge of baking and my mom was the cook (an amazing one at that.) So, whenever I wanted fried cauliflower I would have to ask her to make it for me. I usually saved it for special occasions, like my birthday.

Preparing fried cauliflower is a decent amount of work, so I created this recipe that I can easily prepare for myself which gives me the taste of fried cauliflower. It is a fried cauliflower pancake. It is crisp and crunchy made with pieces of cauliflower. I make mine with ricotta cheese to keep it light.

Nothing will ever taste like my grandmas but this will do for now.

Cauliflower Pancakes

6 tablespoons of olive oil (divided)
½ head of cauliflower
2 eggs
¼ cup almond flour
½ ricotta cheese
1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning

Chop you ½ head of cauliflower coarsely into small pieces. Heat a pan with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and put your cauliflower in the pan. Allow to cook slowly for around half an hour or until soft. Take off the heat and let cool.

In a large bowl, add 2 eggs and almond flour. Mix well. Add the ricotta cheese, salt, pepper and dried Italian seasoning. Add the cauliflower and stir together.

Use a deep pan since you will be frying. Prepare the pan with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and let it get hot. Take 2 tbsp’s of the mix and shape into round little pancakes and put in the oil. Allow each side to cook for around 4 minutes. I find that these cook quickly, so you do not want them to get overcooked. Take out of the pan and put it on a plate covered with a paper towel to drain the extra oil.

You can serve them as they are or with pesto or a balsamic reduction.

Enjoy these as a side dish to your main course or as wonderful little snack! Buon Appetito!

P.S. Let me know if you have a favorite food that evokes special childhood memories.  I would love to hear your stories! 


  1. yum!!! I love cauliflower and this one looks great!!! I've never tried it this way, but I plan on making it very soon!

  2. I love cauliflower and never thought to put it into pancakes, very creative!

  3. I love roasted cauliflower so I am dying to try it fried!

  4. I adore Cauliflower and will be sure to try this, with Cauliflower & ricotta how can you go wrong? Those Grandmas knew their food! I have an awesome cauliflower recipe on my blog if you are looking for another new way :)

  5. I love cauliflower! It is such a healthy substitute for potatoes and I love how these look like little mini hashbrowns. I would love these for sure. This is my first time by your blog. Great to meet you and look forward to reading more!

  6. These look good... I love cauliflower... I make something similar with thinly sliced eggplants... so yum. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Can't wait to try this! Healthy and easy and my kids will LOVE it!

  8. My M.I.L. in Tunisia made something like this sans ricotta, but dipped it in her homemade tomato based sauce...like a zingy ketchup, not like a marinara. Sadly I never got the recipe, but this gives me a starting point. Thanku! Rest in Peace Mama.