“Making me remember how love should be”
Theme song by Malcolm McLaren “Buffalo Love” from Swamp Thing
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It can be said Malcolm McLaren was a narcissist, a manipulator, and an appropriator. All of that may be true to an extent. He also was a visionary who brought NY Punk to London and shaped it into his own cultural movement. When punk became “too commercial,” McLaren went back to New York for the next big musical thing. That led to a series of, in my opinion, groundbreaking and underappreciated albums in the ’80s. He took the sound of the emerging US hip-hop & dance culture and produced four albums mashing up scratching, sampling, beats & breaks, UK hip-house, world music, opera, and classical waltzes. It shouldn’t work, and actually from a commercial perspective didn’t, but like much of McLaren’s ’70s UK Punk, these albums ended up influencing other more successful producers and artists.
The theme song here is an outlier on what is actually the weakest of the four releases. It’s a lovely jazzy dancefloor track reminiscent of Lisa Stansfield or Neneh Cherry. It’s not necessarily groundbreaking but is definitely a stellar example of a sound that a couple of years later would dominate the airwaves. Sure, I could have gone with the obvious “Buffalo Gals” track, but there’s something so perfect about how “Buffalo Love” captures a musical moment in time that it had to be the theme.
This is the logical next step in my cauliflower obsession that started with Cauliflower Dreamin’. Cauliflower is the vegetable version of tofu: fairly bland on its own but a great base for taking up flavors. I usually have a supply of cauliflower taco crumbles in the fridge, but a recent craving for some buffalo chicken salad had me wondering if I could swap out the chicken for cauliflower and make a vegetarian dish.
The answer, not surprisingly, is yes. This retains that Buffalo spice heat but ups the ante a bit with the crunch of cauliflower. It definitely feels healthier and lighter than traditional chicken salad, though it does not keep as well in the fridge. The cauliflower tends to get a bit soggy after a day or so. Still, for a simple meatless dinner salad or sandwich, this is a winner and will be going into the BGC permanent rotation.
Buffalo roasted cauliflower salad and romaine lettuce wrapped in a flour tortilla
Makes 6-8 wraps
1 head roasted Buffalo cauliflower, separated into bite-sized florets
3 stalks celery, diced medium
2 medium carrots, diced medium
1/2 medium red onion, cut in 1/2 and sliced thin
3 tablespoons hot sauce (Frank’s, Red Devil, Texas Pete’s, etc.)
2 tablespoons bottled Ranch dressing
2 tablespoons bottled Blue Cheese dressing
1 teaspoon Buffalo Spice (see recipe below)
Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to thoroughly combine. Set aside.
Combine the vegetables in a large bowl and toss to mix. Add dressing and toss to thoroughly coat. Place in an airtight container and let rest in the fridge for 30 minutes before serving.
Makes about 1/2 cup
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon mustard powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Store in an air-tight container.
ROASTED BUFFALO CAULIFLOWER
1 large head cauliflower, leaves removed stem trimmed so it will sit flat on a baking sheet
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons of Buffalo Spice
Adjust the oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 450°F.
Trim the leaves and a bit of the stem off of the cauliflower. Place the cauliflower, stem side down, onto a foil or Silpat-lined baking sheet. Coat completely with the olive oil, then the dijon, and finally cover with the spice mix. Roast until tender and browned on top, about 35-40 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes.
When cauliflower is cool enough to handle, cut the florets into bite-size pieces, but not chopped fine. Cut the stem into small chunks.
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