Cauliflower is one of my favourite vegetables, to cook and to eat. It’s incredibly versatile, takes on other flavours really well, and has a deliciously savoury, nutty, flavour when browned nicely. There is a reason that lots of steak houses offer cauliflower steak as a vegetarian option. It sears well, tastes great, and works so well with classic steak sauces (or even just butter/oil).
It’s often my go to option for vegetarian minced meat - I’m not won over by the fake-meat minces, and simply roughly chopping cauliflower and browning nicely in a pan or in the oven as a base for a lasagne meat sauce or in a quick week night chilli is so much better and easier (and undoubtedly healthier).
This meal was something I thought of this week - I had planned to make the roasted red pepper sauce to serve with some cod I was going to grill, but didn’t have the cod defrosted and had a cauliflower in the fridge to use up, so decided to give it a whirl, and was not disappointed! This is a great weeknight meal. It’s vegan, if you don’t add parmesan, and is just straight up delicious. The roasted pepper sauce is sweet and slightly tangy (would be good cooled and served with flatbreads) and the savoury, browned cauliflower goes beautifully.
- A light meal for two, or a generous starter
- 10 minutes
- 1 large head of Cauliflower
- Olive oil
- 2 red peppers
- 1 small onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 pinch of chilli flakes
- Vegetable stock (optional)
- Cider vinegar
- Parmesan and fresh chives for topping (optional)
- Set up for roasting at 200C. If you are BBQing this then set the grill up for indirect cooking at 200C, this can also really easily be done in an oven, pre-heat oven to 180C fan oven/200C regular oven
- Halve the red peppers and remove seeds and membrane from inside, place them skin-side up on a baking tray and put in the oven to roast for 40 minutes
- Cut the cauliflower into steaks, about 1-2 inches thick, and brush them with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Lay them on a lined baking tray
- After the peppers have been roasting for about 20 minutes, put the cauliflower into the oven to cook for 20 minutes, flip them half way through.
- Once the cauliflower has gone into the oven, cook the onions in a generous glug of olive oil and pinch of salt until soft. Once softened and fragrant, add the garlic and chilli flakes and cook for a further minute. Reduce the heat until the peppers are roasted
- Once the peppers are done, remove from the oven and carefully peel off the skin, it should be charred and should peel away easily (be careful though, it will be hot). Once peeled roughly chop and add the peppers to the onions.
- Using a hand held immersion blender, process the sauce until a smooth consistency.
- Add a small dash of cider vinegar, and use the stock to loosen the sauce a little (if not using stock, you can use water here). If you add too much and it is too runny, return the heat and allow to thicken again.
- Serve up - add two large tablespoons of roast pepper sauce to the plate before adding the cauliflower steak. Top with fresh chopped chives and parmesan, if you want.
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