Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mediterranean Roasted Cauliflower

Mediterranean cuisine - the mastermind of hummus, stuffed grape leaves, and everything garlicky and delicious (Hmmm... grape leaves, good idea...).

When my parents treated me to a Mediterranean feast at a chic little restaurant for my birthday, I eagerly nabbed their cauliflower dip off of the appetizer menu. This was the description: Mashed roasted cauliflower with tahini, lemon juice, and garlic... Say no more!

This was a hit for us. It was so rich and flavorful that I was worried the waiter mislead me and that it was actually smothered in cheese! Alas, it was cheese-free and just miraculously scrumptious. I want this in my life always, so I of course I went home and attempted this goodness myself.

I revamped it a bit so it could be more of a hearty side dish and/or meal instead of a dip. This meant I could circumvent the oil that our menu selection was smothered in. :)

Mediterranean Roasted Cauliflower 

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1 head of fresh cauliflower, roasted, separated
1 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp tahini paste
1/8 c lemon juice (+ more to taste)
1/4 c plant milk (+ more if too acidic)
1/4 c water/broth
2 tsp nutritional yeast (optional, but suggested)
1/2 tsp low-sodium tamari (or soy sauce)
1 tsp dijon mustard
3/4 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp coriander
Paprika, as garnish

Preheat oven to 420 and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Cut head of cauliflower into bite-sized pieces (not sure if frozen would roast as well), and place in oven for 40 minutes.

In a small blender or food processor, combine ingredients/spices. This sauce is very much to taste, so be ready to taste-test your way to happiness and check my tweaking tips below:

Tweaking Tips: 
  • Too thick: add water
  • Too tart: add tiny splashes of plant milk
  • Too bland: add tiny splashes of lemon juice
Remove cauliflower from oven, add 1/2 cup cauliflower to blender and whiz with the sauce. Add as much sauce as desired to cauliflower, sprinkle with paprika, and serve immediately. Enjoy warm with tortilla chips, pita, or pair with rice for a full meal.

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