Whole Baked Spiced Cauliflower


his new take on cooking cauliflower is very ‘in’ at the moment in the foodie world. If I’m honest, I’m not sure what was wrong with a good old cauliflower cheese and bangers. Probably the growing nation of ‘lactose intolerent’ foodies who can however still manage to gorge on cheese? Regardless, after seeing recipe in the trusty Waitrose Magazine this was one I felt I actually wanted to cook! Glamourized in my favourite Moroccan spices I served this up dramatically as a side dish to a middle eastern themed dinner a few weekends ago. A lovely and alternative way to cook and present a cauliflower! Perfect for added theatre at any dinner party where it can be bought to the table to the ‘oooo’s’ and ‘ahhhh’s’ of your hungry guests. Perfect as a side dish here but also as an ideal vegetarian mid week supper to share with a cauliflower loving friend or lactose intolerant acquaintance.

Serve 4-5 (as a side dish)

  • 1 large cauliflower, outer leaves removed.
  • 1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
  • 2 tbsp pomegranate seeds
  • Handful toasted pine nuts
  • 1 tsp rose petals
  • 1 handful chopped flat leaf parsely

Spiced butter

  • 40g softened unsalted butter
  • 1 lemon, juice
  • 1 crushed garlic clove
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp sumac
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • Pinch ground nutmeg
  • Pinch ground cardamon
  • 1 1/2 tbsp chopped coriander
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Bring a large pan of water to the boil. Simmer the cauliflower for 5-7 minutes until just tender when the stem is pierced with a knife. Allow for it to remain a little firm as it will continue cooking in the oven (you can also steam the cauliflower if preferred) Drain and cool a little. Leave to dry as much as possible.
  3. Meanwhile combine all the ingredients for the spiced butter in a food processor keeping out a small pinch of coriander. Stir this in last once you have a dark brown spiced paste.
  4. Find a large ovenproof dish you can snugly fit the cauliflower in and oil or grease the base.
  5. Spread the butter all over the surface of the cauliflower, working it into the cracks and place in the dish.
  6. Roast in the oven for about 15-30 minutes. All you are looking for is a lovely charred surface and a tender cauliflower. You can also do this under the grill to brown the top at the end or on the barbeque.
  7. Once cooked remove from the oven and let stand for a few minutes as it will be too hot to serve. Scatter with the pomegranate, pine nuts, rose and herbs and serve.


Jess - Whole baked caluilfower#3Jess - Whole baked cauliflower#2