April 20, 2013


If you'd have asked me a couple of weeks ago if i liked cauliflower, a big loud NO would have been flung in your direction, probably with a facial expression resembling a bulldog chewing a wasp. 
I used to feel the exact same way about cauliflower as my husband still feels about tofu ("it's basically a sponge full of skanky water") so for years I never ever bought it. Even when I used to eat cheese (pretty much constantly) I still couldn't be convinced to waste some perfectly good mature cheddar by slathering it over a cloud of white nonsense.

But then, i saw this whilst i was searching for harissa stockists and I was mesmerised! 
Roasting  cauliflower must mean no water, right?! RIGHT!
Suddenly things got interesting. I embraced cauliflower like the big old grown up that I am and I made this three times in the past week. Oh yeah, i really went to town on this one! I had it with a family roast dinner, I devoured it in a salad and then I hit the taste jackpot when I teamed it up with some kale and piled it high on some toasted sourdough. All equally amazing, and all begging to be made over & over again.

OK, OK you now think I'm both crazy & greedy don't you? ("she ate this 3 times in a week. Woah!") But if you've been coming here for a while or you have the pleasure of knowing me in real 3D animated form, you'll have figured that out a long long time ago... 

Go, go MAKE!

This recipe serves 4-6 as a side and you will need:
Adapted from here

- 1 large head of cauliflower, cut into bite size florets
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tin chick peas, drained & rinsed
- 1 red onion, finely sliced
- 2 tsp harissa paste
- 1 handful of flat leaf parsley, leaves chopped
- 1 handful coriander, leaves chopped
- 1/2 lemon
- sea salt

And you will need to do this:

1. Pre-heat your oven to 200C/400F/GM6
2. Lay your cauliflower florets on a large roasting tin. Cover with 3 tbsps of olive oil, 1/2 tsp of sea salt and the cumin seeds - combine well.

3. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes until the cauliflower is both tender & starting to turn golden. Add the chick peas and roast for another 20 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, heat the remaining 1tbsp of olive oil in a frying pan. Add the red onion and a little salt. Cover the pan, and cook over a medium to low until the onions are soft, roughly 5-10 minutes.
5. When soft, stir in the harissa & 1 tbsp of water. Stir well to combine, cover and remove from the heat.
6. When the time is up, remove your chick pea & cauliflower from the oven. Stir through your onion mixture and the juice from the 1/2 lemon and combine well.

7. Scatter over the fresh herbs and serve either as a side, a salad topping on on some toasted sour dough. Mmmmmm - ENJOY!


  1. ottolenghi does a great roasted cauliflower salad with baby toms and spinach I think you'd like A LOT! In his first book if you have it, check it out! x

    1. ooo thanks for the tip! I've got one of his books on my kindle, i think it might be his first :)

  2. Is the Harissa Paste really spicy? I like the idea of all of this... except the spicy!

    1. Hello you :)

      It kind of differs which brand you get. I've always found Barts quite mildish but some of the more authentic ones do tend to kick a bit more of a punch! I'd say start off with one spoonful, you can always add more next time if you did fancy a little more heat? Also, Sainsbos do Harissa spice mix, which would be even easier to adjust the heat.

      It's a cracker though, you'll love it! xx

  3. Is the Harissa Paste really spicy? I like the idea of all of this... except the spicy!