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Spices and Flavors for Cauliflower:


Shel_B
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My GF loves cauliflower, but she does not handle spiced or hot food very well. I'd like to get some ideas for making more than a cheese sauce for the cauli. I've roasted it, made it with curries (even mild curry can be a problem for my sweetie), played with a few other options without much success. Any suggestions? Thanks!

 ... Shel


 

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I make a onion/dijon/bacon-flavored cauliflower gratin (with cheddar on top sometimes). Rich flavor but not at all spicy. My wife has similar tastes to your GF and she loves it even though she otherwise hates mustard.

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It's good with oil cured olives (or brine cured is fine too), parsley, shallots, and roasted red pepper with oil and vinegar. You can do this room temp or warm. If you have good salt packed anchovies (and like them), some filets are nice to add to the mix.

nunc est bibendum...

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I make a onion/dijon/bacon-flavored cauliflower gratin (with cheddar on top sometimes). Rich flavor but not at all spicy. My wife has similar tastes to your GF and she loves it even though she otherwise hates mustard.

Well, Toots likes mustard but won't eat bacon. I wish she would, even just a little, sometimes. But you've provided some food for thought. Thanks!

 ... Shel


 

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Have you done the roasted thing as in this extensive topic? That opens up a whole new door.

ETA: oops I see you already tried roasted but that topic may give you more ideas. Pureed in a creamy soup is nice and if you google around in the low carb recipes where it is used as faux potatoes you could hit on a winner for her.

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http://threemonkeysandahippo.blogspot.com/2011/03/arnabeet-mekleh-fried-cauliflower-salad.html

This is my favourite way to eat cauliflower - add it to a salad of rocca, peppers and radish with a sprinlking of sumac ( a citrussy middle eastern spice) and tahini in toasted pitta bread for a great snack or as a side order with roasted quail for example...

"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

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Have you done the roasted thing as in this extensive topic? That opens up a whole new door.

ETA: oops I see you already tried roasted but that topic may give you more ideas. Pureed in a creamy soup is nice and if you google around in the low carb recipes where it is used as faux potatoes you could hit on a winner for her.

I love roasted cauli, been making it in many iterations for years. Toots enjoys it as well. It's just that we need some new ideas for flavor - I like curried cauli,pasta with cauli, and so many other variations. Toots likes most any style, but is fussy about spicy food and too much cow's milk dairy.

 ... Shel


 

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I have a great cauliflower recipe: first I roast florets in the oven until nicely caramelized. Then, on the stove top, I cook some rice grains (about 1tsp) in oil over high heat - you have to keep going until the rice is crunchy/crisp otherwise the whole thing tastes weird. then turn down the heat somewhat and add in about 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds, green chiles, a bit of garam masala (see my thoughts on making Garam masala in the series of posts starting here under the chicken curry section: http://zollipop.com/winndian-cooking/), and a dash of turmeric. Not too much turmeric or it will taste like old library books. Season with salt and pepper, then add a few soupspoons of water, cover, and let the flavours mingle for 3-5 minutes. Enjoy!

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I have a great cauliflower recipe: first I roast florets in the oven until nicely caramelized. Then, on the stove top, I cook some rice grains (about 1tsp) in oil over high heat - you have to keep going until the rice is crunchy/crisp otherwise the whole thing tastes weird. then turn down the heat somewhat and add in about 1/2 tsp of cumin seeds, green chiles, a bit of garam masala (see my thoughts on making Garam masala in the series of posts starting here under the chicken curry section: http://zollipop.com/winndian-cooking/), and a dash of turmeric. Not too much turmeric or it will taste like old library books. Season with salt and pepper, then add a few soupspoons of water, cover, and let the flavours mingle for 3-5 minutes. Enjoy!

I made something ike that yesterday, but without the rice. Even the cumin was a little much for her, but it's possible that cutting back on the amount will do the trick. I used ground cumin, so it may have been more intense than what you're suggesting. I also sautéd some onions in the oil as there were no acceptable chiles in the house - I'd go with poblano or Anneheim for Toots, something a little more intense when cooking for myself. Instead of water I used chicken stock - it was handy - although I've used water at times as well. My preference might be for potatoes instead of rice. Rice can sometimes spike my blood sugar. I'll check the link. Thanks!

 ... Shel


 

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http://threemonkeysandahippo.blogspot.com/2011/03/arnabeet-mekleh-fried-cauliflower-salad.html

This is my favourite way to eat cauliflower - add it to a salad of rocca, peppers and radish with a sprinlking of sumac ( a citrussy middle eastern spice) and tahini in toasted pitta bread for a great snack or as a side order with roasted quail for example...

This recipe looks great! :D I wish I can try this one out. I'm sure it will turn out great!

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One cauliflower dish that Lebanese restaurants around here (Bristol, UK) seem to have is cauliflower fried in olive oil with garlic, and then near the end lemon juice and parsley is sprinkled in. The cauliflower is very delicious because it is tender and golden from cooking in the oil (add no water, think of it like a long cooked stir fry) and the lemon-garlic-parsley flavour is delicious. A few sesame seeds chucked in are also good.

It's a shame, as I have tonnes of delicious South Asian cauliflower dishes, and many of them are not chilli-hot at all, but if she doesn't even like cumin then I am not sure what other spices she may object to.

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One cauliflower dish that Lebanese restaurants around here (Bristol, UK) seem to have is cauliflower fried in olive oil with garlic, and then near the end lemon juice and parsley is sprinkled in. The cauliflower is very delicious because it is tender and golden from cooking in the oil (add no water, think of it like a long cooked stir fry) and the lemon-garlic-parsley flavour is delicious. A few sesame seeds chucked in are also good.

It's a shame, as I have tonnes of delicious South Asian cauliflower dishes, and many of them are not chilli-hot at all, but if she doesn't even like cumin then I am not sure what other spices she may object to.

I don't know...is there life without cumin??? :raz:

Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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you can make great creamy soup with it, and they are also fantastic as a quick pickle.

I've also seen them sliced very thin (look like a photo of a tree) and then - I believe - roasted in the oven with a bit oil, in between two baking sheets to keep them flat. Makes great looking chips! I've yet to do that myself, and I'm not sure where I saw the recipe, but it's probably pretty straight forward.

"And don't forget music - music in the kitchen is an essential ingredient!"

- Thomas Keller

Diablo Kitchen, my food blog

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Here's my "go-to" recipe for cauliflower. I can't recall when I first began using it or where I got it. I have made some changes since the original recipe used different ingredients.

Baked whole cauliflower

You can use one large head of cauliflower for 4-6 people

or two medium heads for 7-10.

wash and remove all the leaves and cut the stem so the center is below the shoulders of the cauliflower.

Use a steamer basket over about 1 inch of water in a sauce pan into which the cauliflower fits and can be tightly covered.

Steam for 20 minutes it should be slightly tender.

While the cauliflower is steaming gather these ingredients:

6 tablespoons butter (salted)

1 medium garlic clove, finely minced or put through a press

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs - medium to coarse

1/8 cup grated Grana Padano cheese use parmesan if you must.

1 heaping tablespoon of grated Sap Sago (if you can't find this just add the same amount of Grana Padano)

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (I prefer white, but use what you have)

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of kosher salt

Pinch of herbs de Provence

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a casserole dish of a size that will easily hold the whole cauliflower with an inch free around it.

In a small skillet brown the butter

add the garlic and cook for 1 minute

add the vinegar, stir and remove from heat.

Toss the bread crumbs with the remaining ingredients.

Drizzle the butter/garlic/vinegar mixture over the bread crumbs

toss well so the mixture is evenly moistened.

Place the cauliflower right side up in a casserole dish

spoon the bread crumb mixture over and around it.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the bread crumbs are slightly browned.

Sprinkle with pimenton if desired.

I recommend that you do try to get the Sap Sago. It has a flavor that is a bit too sharp on its own but a little goes a long

way and it enhances dishes that would otherwise be sort of bland.

This is a very "forgiving" recipe and can be modified in numerous ways to fit your tastes. Don't be afraid to experiment.

You can serve it with a cheese or white sauce on the side, if you wish or a condiment such as chutney, etc.

Andie

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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I love this preparation.. cauliflower, browned in butter, and then sprinkled with hazelnuts, pear and herbs. I make this all the time.

I also have a huge arsenal of roasted cauliflower ideas, but no bacon or spice rules out most of them. :) Though I did make a nice rosemary/lemon zest/parmesan version the other night. Chinese five-spice on roasted cf could also be an idea..that's pretty mild but interesting.

Edited by rarerollingobject (log)
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Here's my "go-to" recipe for cauliflower. I can't recall when I first began using it or where I got it. I have made some changes since the original recipe used different ingredients.

Baked whole cauliflower

You can use one large head of cauliflower for 4-6 people

or two medium heads for 7-10.

wash and remove all the leaves and cut the stem so the center is below the shoulders of the cauliflower.

Use a steamer basket over about 1 inch of water in a sauce pan into which the cauliflower fits and can be tightly covered.

Steam for 20 minutes it should be slightly tender.

While the cauliflower is steaming gather these ingredients:

6 tablespoons butter (salted)

1 medium garlic clove, finely minced or put through a press

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs - medium to coarse

1/8 cup grated Grana Padano cheese use parmesan if you must.

1 heaping tablespoon of grated Sap Sago (if you can't find this just add the same amount of Grana Padano)

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (I prefer white, but use what you have)

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of kosher salt

Pinch of herbs de Provence

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a casserole dish of a size that will easily hold the whole cauliflower with an inch free around it.

In a small skillet brown the butter

add the garlic and cook for 1 minute

add the vinegar, stir and remove from heat.

Toss the bread crumbs with the remaining ingredients.

Drizzle the butter/garlic/vinegar mixture over the bread crumbs

toss well so the mixture is evenly moistened.

Place the cauliflower right side up in a casserole dish

spoon the bread crumb mixture over and around it.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the bread crumbs are slightly browned.

Sprinkle with pimenton if desired.

That sounds really good. I happen to have a head of cauliflower in my fridge so I'll give it a try. Will have to modify the recipe as I don't have all the ingredients mentioned.

You think it'll be ok to use some lemon juice instead of sherry vinegar (don't have any). I do have rice, malt, Chinese black, apple cider, white and a lovely blood plum vinegar.

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Thanks everyone. This evening I made a soup for Toots with cumin and, surprise surprise! she said it could even be a little more spicy. So, I guess if the amount of cumin is small, she can handle it. So, bring on the cumin recipes and I'll play with amounts and proportions.

 ... Shel


 

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Here's my "go-to" recipe for cauliflower. I can't recall when I first began using it or where I got it. I have made some changes since the original recipe used different ingredients.

Baked whole cauliflower

You can use one large head of cauliflower for 4-6 people

or two medium heads for 7-10.

wash and remove all the leaves and cut the stem so the center is below the shoulders of the cauliflower.

Use a steamer basket over about 1 inch of water in a sauce pan into which the cauliflower fits and can be tightly covered.

Steam for 20 minutes it should be slightly tender.

While the cauliflower is steaming gather these ingredients:

6 tablespoons butter (salted)

1 medium garlic clove, finely minced or put through a press

1 tablespoon sherry vinegar

3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs - medium to coarse

1/8 cup grated Grana Padano cheese use parmesan if you must.

1 heaping tablespoon of grated Sap Sago (if you can't find this just add the same amount of Grana Padano)

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper (I prefer white, but use what you have)

1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Pinch of kosher salt

Pinch of herbs de Provence

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a casserole dish of a size that will easily hold the whole cauliflower with an inch free around it.

In a small skillet brown the butter

add the garlic and cook for 1 minute

add the vinegar, stir and remove from heat.

Toss the bread crumbs with the remaining ingredients.

Drizzle the butter/garlic/vinegar mixture over the bread crumbs

toss well so the mixture is evenly moistened.

Place the cauliflower right side up in a casserole dish

spoon the bread crumb mixture over and around it.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the bread crumbs are slightly browned.

Sprinkle with pimenton if desired.

That sounds really good. I happen to have a head of cauliflower in my fridge so I'll give it a try. Will have to modify the recipe as I don't have all the ingredients mentioned.

You think it'll be ok to use some lemon juice instead of sherry vinegar (don't have any). I do have rice, malt, Chinese black, apple cider, white and a lovely blood plum vinegar.

You can use any kind of vinegar that isn't the "raw" distilled stuff. Balsamic, cider, plum, etc., or use lemon juice.

All you need is just a hint of the acid "bite" to brighten the flavor.

I have in the past, forgotten the vinegar in the bread crumbs and drizzled it on after baking.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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