Although we’re not much into meatish fakes, you can indeed turn a firm, large cauliflower into steaks (of a sort) that deserve a knife and a fork. Rather than grill them outdoors, we’ve headed to the stove because we feel the sear from the skillet, followed by the more gentle heat of the oven, creates the best overall texture. We also let an Asian condiment do a lot of the work in balancing the flavors. Since this dish is a big finish to a meal, the courses that come before should be light and simple but with spiky, hot, or salty flavors so this plate doesn’t come out of the blue.
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Make Ahead Tips
Make the sweet potato puree up to 4 hours in advance. Store, covered, on the back of the stove.
There will inevitably be leftover cauliflower that is not cut into steaks. Save it in the fridge and use it in a day or two to make an easy dinner.
Thai sweet chili sauce is the dipping sauce of choice for spring rolls in Thai restaurants—and available in almost all larger supermarkets. It’s a thickened concoction of vinegar, sugar, and chiles, sometimes with aromatic vegetables in the mix.
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