This meatloaf wasn't as weird as I wanted it to be. I was hoping to find either a purple, orange, or green cauliflower head and use that as the center but alas, I didn't encounter such a colorful cauliflower at my meat market where I did see them this time last January. So I had to use your garden-variety white cauliflower head. :(
But I did find veal, which to me is weirder than chicken, which I also found and the only two dishes most people eat veal with as the star protein are wiener schnitzel or veal parmigana. I've never seen any other type of veal dish served at a restaurant in my life, so in that sense, the fact it's seldom used as the lone protein makes it a tad unusual.
Veal is lean meat and to not make this meatloaf dry, I added a s**t ton of thousand island dressing to fatten the dish, on top of the cauliflower head.
I didn't have heavy cream on hand so I improvised with a mixture of milk and Icelandic yogurt, which is even thicker than the now ubiquitous Greek type, but Greek yogurt will work just as well.
This was by far one of the most memorable dishes I've made on this channel. The fact that there were multiple layers of textures and contrasts made this meatloaf very addicting. It's like cauliflower and meatloaf were made for each other! The addition of the cheese, which I found from this video, elevated this dish to a whole new level.
Of course, this being 2018, I used the entire cauliflower from root-to-stem by surrounding the head with the leaves it was attached to. Believe it or not, the cauliflower leaves are edible, provided you cook them for an extended period of time, like an hour in the oven. But I added spinach leaves for a more green color contrast.
But my dad thought the meatloaf tasted like lamb, which he isn't wrong about.
You will need:
For the cooking equipment:
A microwave-safe bowl with lid
A large bowl
A deep dish or pan like a jelly roll pan or souffle dish
2 lasagna pans
For the ingredients:
1 cauliflower head with the bottom of the core cut off
The leaves of the cauliflower head detached from the head itself
1/4 cup water
Shredded cheese(I used mozzarella)
2 beaten and whisked eggs
1-2 packets onion soup mix
Greek or Icelandic yogurt(can use heavy cream in lieu of the milk and yogurt)
1 lb. ground veal
Thousand island dressing or mustard
Pinch of paprika
1. Pour the water into a microwave-safe bowl and place the cauliflower head face down in the water. Put the lid on the bowl and microwave the cauliflower for 3 minutes.
2. Turn the cauliflower over using 2 forks and cook in the microwave for an additional 3-4 minutes.
3. Poke holes in the cauliflower using the handle of a whisk. Insert the shredded cheese into the holes.
4. Put the next 5 ingredients into a large bowl and mix all the ingredients up until you get a thick mixture that can stick to the top of the cauliflower.
5. Line a deep dish with aluminum foil and pour the thick mixture into the bottom of the lined dish. Place the stuffed cauliflower face down into the mixture.
6. Carefully transfer the cauliflower to a double-lined lasagna pan using the edges of the foil. Turn the cauliflower upside down and you should get something that looks like a brain.
7. Douse the top and sides of the cauliflower with the thousand island dressing or mustard and cover the mustard or dressing with the panko breadcrumbs.
8. Surround the cauliflower head with the cauliflower and spinach leaves. Pour soy sauce on top of the leaves.
9. Sprinkle the top of the breaded cauliflower head with paprika.
10. Bake the cauliflower center meatloaf in a 350 degree Fahrenheit for 60 minutes or until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Do not discard the liquid surrounding the meatloaf, it's perfectly edible and very delicious!