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Friday, April 27, 2012

Cauliflower Two Ways

I bought this huge head of cauliflower on a whim last weekend, hoping to use it over the week, a few florets at at time, in different dishes. As I trimmed and cleaned the florets to save them in the fridge, I was thinking about Cauliflower 65 and Roasted Cauliflower and Gobi Manchurian and such that I usually make, wondering if I have shared the other simple ways in which I like to serve up cauliflower as a side...

And that led me to serving up cauliflower in two quick ways that I relish:
1. Hot Chili Cauliflower
2. Lemon Parmesan Oregano Cauliflower

I prefer to par-cook the florets in the microwave with a sprinkling of salt for a couple of minutes while I get the flavors going in the pan. This way, I can just toss the tender florets in with the flavors and have it ready in just a few minutes.

1. Hot Chili Cauliflower

I am sure it is no secret that Sambal Oelek is a staple in my kitchen. Some tomato paste, dry red chilies and sambal oelek come together to flavor the cauliflowers in this presentation.

1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp Tomato paste
2 Tbsp sambal oelek
2 dry red chilies (we had some home-dried chilies from last year's garden)
a few tablespoon of water as needed

3 cups steamed/par-cooked cauliflower florets (I prefer small florets for this rather than huge chunks)

Heat the oil in a pan, add the rest of the ingredients and sautée for a couple of minutes while the cauliflower florets are par cooking.

Stir in the florets and adjust flavors to taste. Garnish with cilantro, chives or spring onions if preferred and serve warm as a side, or with naan or steamed brown rice.

2. Lemon Parmesan Oregano Cauliflower

lemon parmesan cauliflower

Some fresh oregano leaves from the garden add a hint of herbal note to this light and flavorful dish. Squeeze as much lemon juice as preferred, or as little. My daughter likes the tangy sourness whereas I prefer a hint of lemon/lime.

½ tsp turmeric powder
3 cups par-cooked cauliflower florets
2 to 4 tablespoon lemon juice
1 or 2 wedges or lemon or lime for garnish and some extra twist
¼ to ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp olive oil
a few sprigs of fresh oregano leaves (or as much ground oregano as preferred)

Heat the oil in a pan, add the turmeric powder,oregano, and par-cooked florets and sautée a bit. Off heat stir in lemon juice and Parmesan cheese. Garnish with fresh oregano leaves and lemon/lime wedges.

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