This dish is on high rotation in our house as it ticks a number of boxes. I’ve been trying to cook two meat-free dinners per week and even though this is vegetarian, it is still substantial – which means we aren’t starving within an hour of eating it. It is also high in fiber and is a cinch to cook when I get home from work. It is great as a side dish with fish or a BBQ.
Originally adapted from a Karen Martini recipe, it is a very forgiving recipe and therefore exact quantities aren’t really necessary – it will still work and taste great. You can substitute a number of ingredients depending what you have in your pantry/fridge, so I’ve written it that way. That said, it is a cauliflower salad … so the only mandatory ingredient is therefore, the cauliflower!
1 whole head of cauliflower
1 tsp cumin seeds
drizzle of olive oil
1 handful nuts …
– eg almonds, pistachio, walnuts, pepitas or sunflower
½ cup grain …
– eg quinoa (GF), buckwheat (GF), freekah (low gluten), barley or farro
½ cup finely chopped green shallots …
– or scallion, red onion
½ cup chopped herbs …
– eg parsley, basil, mint, coriander, dill or a combination
½ cup dried fruit …
– eg currants, cranberries, cherries or fresh pomegranate seeds
½ cup diced feta …
– or crumbled goat cheese
juice ½ lemon
drizzle extra virgin olive oil
drizzle pomegranate molasses (optional)
a scattering of pepitas
1. Cut the cauliflower in slices about 1cm thick and then remove most of the thick stalk from the slices. Drizzle over some olive oil, season with salt and sprinkle over the cumin seeds. Spread the cauliflower out on a baking tray lined with baking paper. I prefer to spead over two trays as it cooks quicker and browns better. Cook at 180C for around 30-40 mins until the cauliflower is nicely browned.
2. Meanwhile, cook the grain you are using as per the packet instructions.
3. Once the cauli is done, remove it from the oven, throw the nuts on the tray and cook until slightly roasted – watch them carefully, takes about 3-5 mins. Allow both the nuts and cauliflower to cool slightly for a few minutes.
4. In a bowl, add the rest of the ingredients. Throw in the nuts and cauliflower, including all the little caramelised bits. Squeeze over the lemon juice, drizzle the pomegranate molasses, some olive oil and mix through. Season with sea salt to taste.
5. Serve in a bowl or platter and scatter the feta (or goat cheese) and pepita over the top.
Serves 2-3 as a meal, or 4 as a side dish.