A healthful, flavorful Moroccan-inspired recipe for roasted cauliflower salad, with harissa and roasted chickpeas.
If you love cauliflower or better yet, if you find yourself on the vegetable fence, try spicing it up and roasting as I do in this slightly Moroccan-inspired recipe.
The author, Barbara Kafka, lists the many ways it can be prepared; Steamed, stir-fried, boiled, fried, and last but not least, microwaved.
And then she writes: “Cauliflower...is not good roasted”.
Are you freaking kidding me?!
I couldn’t disagree more.
Cauliflower is delicious roasted.
In fact, it might be my favorite way to eat it. But to give Ms. Kafka the benefit of the doubt, I’m sure she was expressing her fine-tuned personal taste.
My personal taste includes a pretty intense addiction to the spicy Tunisian chili paste harissa.
I could — and do — put harissa on everything at any time of day, from eggs to leftovers I eat for lunch. It’s my global ketchup.
Try making this easy homemade harissa recipe or grab your favorite store-bought harissa to make the roasted cauliflower salad.
What is harissa?
Harissa is a chili paste condiment from North Africa, very common in Tunisian and Moroccan cooking.
It’s usually made with a combination of dried red chili peppers, garlic, olive oil and spices like caraway and coriander.
You can find harissa in many well-stocked supermarkets — I recommend the one made by Moulin Mahjoub.
But if you really want to find harissa nirvana, it’s easy to make yourself. It has just the right amount of smoky, sweet-heat and savory deliciousness.
More easy to make recipes for cauliflower:
roasted cauliflower salad with harissa chickpeas
Yield 4 servings
The incredibly tasty cauliflower makes a simple salad meal served warm over wilted spinach.
Use your favorite brand of harissa, or make this easy homemade harissa recipe.
- 1 head cauliflower, separated into bite-sized florets
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
- 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained
- 1 small sweet onion, like Maui or red onion; finely sliced
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 2 – 3 tablespoons harissa
- 1/4 cup each Italian parsley and cilantro leaves
- ½ a lemon
- 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
- Heat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Spread the cauliflower out on a large rimmed baking sheet. Add 3 tablespoons of the oil, ½ teaspoon salt and the cumin seeds. Roast 20 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender and golden. Add the chickpeas and roast an additional 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat the remaining tablespoon oil in an 8 – 10-inch sauté pan. Add the onion and a pinch of salt. Cover the pan and cook over medium-low heat until the onions are very soft. Stir in the garlic and harissa along with 2 tablespoons water and stir until blended.
- Tear the parsley and cilantro into rough pieces and throw them over the chickpeas. Squeeze the lemon over and toss together with the harissa-onion mixture.
- Transfer to a serving bowl and top with the feta.