The perfect spring vegetable dish

April 7, 2010

Last night I discovered my new favourite vegetable dish – saffron cauliflower. And, because the recipe is by Yotam Ottolenghi, I suppose I have to take back a comment I made a while ago about his recipes being too complicated.

I spotted the dish on The Guardian website, in a feature it does each month on seasonal vegetables. Cauliflower is one of my favourite veggies at the best of times, but right now, it is really delicious. And this recipe combines it with one of my favourite spices, saffron.

It was one of those fortuitous moments where you find a recipe that is new, tasty-looking, simple to put together AND you have all the ingredients to hand. The only thing I left out was the sultanas (yucky, evil little things that they are).

The cauliflower I had was a fairly small one, so I decided to cook the whole thing. I ate half of the dish last night with some of my leftover roast chicken on the side, and am currently munching on the rest of it for lunch (combined with some tinned butter beans), as I type this.

I’m sure this will be making very frequent appearances in my kitchen from now on, and it’s certainly changed my attitude towards trying out Ottolenghi recipes…

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9 Responses to “The perfect spring vegetable dish”

  1. Ravenous Ro Says:

    The food of the Devil…

    Although you may make it taste okay.

  2. smelter rat Says:

    Out of curiosity from across the Atlantic where terminology can be different..Sultanas are raisins, right?


  3. More or less, yes. I always thought sultanas were from white grapes and raisins were from red grapes. But, having looked into it a little, it seems the difference is more to do with the drying method – which results in raisins being much smaller, darker and less juicy than sultanas (in the UK, anyway).
    Whatever, they’re all gross, as far as I’m concerned!

  4. smelter rat Says:

    OK. I’ll do what I always do in a situation like this, and substitute a bottle of red wine 🙂


  5. Ha! You sound like my kind of foodie!

  6. smelter rat Says:

    Tried it today, with some modifications and the result tasted great. Substituted “craisins” for the Sultanas (dried cranberries), skipped the olives, although if I’d have thought to buy them I probably would have used black ones, and instead of saffron which is ridiculously expensive out here in the colonies I used a touch of smoked paprika.


  7. That sounds delicious. I love seeing how a dish can evolve like this, depending on what you have in your cupboard. I bought cauliflower and olives at the market on Saturday, with the intention of doing this dish again – and I think I might give it a go with some dried cranberries, as I really like them. (Don’t ask me why I can stomach cranberries and not sultanas. It’s one of life’s mysteries…)


  8. … I think I would leave out the sultanas, too. Not because I loathe them but because imagining the taste as I read, I think it would taste delicious enough without bursts of sweetness. Thanks for a great idea!


  9. If you like sultanas, then I’m sure they add something to the flavour of the dish. But I can assure you that, yes, it does taste delicious without ’em too!


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