I almost didn’t post this recipe.
I wasn’t thrilled with the above photo of the finished dish (we were in a rush to eat dinner and the light wasn’t the best, so I just snapped a few and figured I’d edit them to my liking, but none were particularly great), and if you know anything about food blogs, you know the photos are a pretty big part of why people are compelled to read a post.
But then, two bites into my first Cauliflower Queso Fundido-stuffed taco, embellished with a little guacamole, cilantro, and a few slivers of bright, crunchy shallot, I decided you needed to have this recipe ASAP, and I needed to get over myself. Maybe I’ll reshoot the photos one day when I have more time (or next week, when I inevitably make this again). Or maybe I won’t, and that will be okay too.
Sometimes it’s hard not to overthink appearances. If you spend much time on social media (and if you’re reading this, I’m guessing you do–or you are an older relative of mine who checks this website every few weeks to see what I’m up to, and if so, hi! I love you!) you are familiar with the bizarre, Instagram-filtered, scarily perfect world it can sometimes feel like. I almost never do my nails, but on the wrong day, a scroll through my Insta feed will have me convinced I need a gel French manicure STAT (or to get bangs, or to lose 15 pounds, or to start using self-tanner, or to somehow afford an all-white marble kitchen re-do…). I love looking at pretty pictures, but I don’t always love how too much of it makes me feel about my own life.
But then comes a realization: photos are just moments. They’re never the whole picture, so to speak. And sure, in the right moment, in the right light, with the right filter, things can *seem* intimidatingly perfect. The important thing to remember is that most likely, the reality is flawed, dimpled, messy, and yeah, maybe a little ugly, because that’s how life works. But in this case, no bad lighting or less-than-beautiful beauty shot can take away from just how delicious this cheesy, melted, slightly spicy cauliflower thing is.
It starts, as so many of my favorite things do, with a rimmed baking sheet of cauliflower and chopped onions in olive oil with salt and pepper.
Roast ’em until they’re tender and brown.
Then layer them in a shallow, heavy-bottomed pot (or a cast iron or a baking dish), with roasted green chilies and cheese.
One more layer.
Pop it under the broiler and top with fresh cilantro.
You could just dive in with a fork or a crunchy chip, but my fave way to eat this is rolled in warm corn tortillas with all the fixings. You won’t miss the meat.
P.S. This is a slab of marble, not an actual marble countertop. I don’t know any bloggers who actually have fancy marble countertops. We’re literally faking every surface we purport to put food on. Who eats tacos right off the counter anyway?
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