Sunday, February 28, 2010

Roasted Cauliflower

Cauliflower, prepped and ready to roast.

The March issue of Food & Wine offers some great ideas for serving familiar foods with an ethnic flair. I often roast cauliflower, but it never turns out quite as soul satisfying as this version which appears in a section called Thai Recipes for Health and Happiness, recipes by Su-Mei Yu, chef and owner of Saffron in San Diego.

With an intro that briefly explains Thai traditional beliefs that the world is made up of four elements: water, fire, earth and wind, the author of the article, Emily Kaiser, using some of Yu's recipes, gets right into examples of how the key to balance and physical health lies in cooking and eating the right ingredients based on the weather.

While the section covers more than just vegetables, it was the vegan recipes that caught my eye. Particularly the roasted cauliflower. There's also directions for a roasted mushroom dish that I plan to make soon.

For some great ideas to add some spice and new life to everyday meals, check out the current issue of Food & Wine. The emphasis this month is on healthy cooking. Word is getting out, isn't it? Many of us are wising up. What we eat or don't eat will greatly affect our health and wellbeing.

This spicy roasted cauliflower is a far cry from the blah 'health food' of yesteryear!

Yu roasts the cauliflower with spices and serves with slivers of kumquat, shallot and fresh cilantro. I breezed along with no shallots and no kumquats yet still had a fragrant, spicy rich dish.

Toast coriander seeds and white peppercorns until fragrant. Allow to cool, transfer to spice grinder then grind to powder. Mix spices with minced garlic, turmeric, crushed red pepper and olive oil, then toss with cored and separated cauliflower florets cut into one inch pieces.

Spread out on baking sheet and roast at 400° for about 25 minutes. Season lightly with salt and then add chopped cilantro, thinly sliced shallots, and chopped kumquats to serve. Check out the March issue for complete details and more great recipes.

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