Saturday, April 28, 2012

Cauliflower Tagine

We’re harvesting the biggest cauliflowers we’ve ever grown.  Big white, perfectly formed cauliflowers.  My usual fallback recipe is my creamy cauliflower and carrot soup, but with the warm weather and the beauty of this vegetable, I didn’t want to puree the thing beyond recognition.  So, I turned to the internet to find a new cauliflower recipe and actually found two that sounded tasty.  The first one was a roasted cauliflower dish that required ingredients I didn’t have on hand so I turned to the second one, Cauliflower Tagine.  This North African spiced dish is a wonderful combination of cumin, ginger, bay and cinnamon with a little lemon and cilantro mixed in.  It will probably become a new “go to” recipe for cauliflower.

Here is the aforementioned cauliflower, just picked from our garden.

I cooked the cauliflower with some onion, garlic, carrots, zucchini, chickpeas and raisins in a broth made of diced tomatoes and No-Chicken Broth.  This combination of vegetables and spices is wonderful, give this one a try, it’s an adventure in a bowl.  Traditionally this type of dish is served on couscous but I poured it over some cooked quinoa I had in my fridge.  The grain and bean combination makes a complete protein.

Cauliflower Tagine
Adapted from a recipe in Redbook by Frank P. Melodia 
Makes 4 main course servings - Use organic ingredients whenever possible

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 onion 
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 slices lemon
2 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 3/4 cups No-Chicken Broth or vegetable broth
2 (14 oz) cans fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
1 medium cauliflower
3 carrots
1 (15 oz) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained
1/2 cup raisins
1 stick cinnamon
2 medium zucchini
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup cilantro leaves
Heat the oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat.
Halve the onion and slice it into strips.
Add the onion to the oil and saute for 6 minutes or until soft and translucent.
Mince the garlic and add it to the onions along with the cumin, ginger, lemon, bay, salt and pepper.
Stir everything for a minute or two and pour in the broth and tomatoes.
Break the cauliflower up into 3 inch long florets
Peel and cut the carrots into 3 inch lengths.
Add the cauliflower, carrots, chickpeas, raisins and cinnamon stick to the broth mixture.
Bring the whole thing to a boil, stirring a few times.
Reduce the heat to low and cover the pot and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Cut the zucchini into 1 inch round pieces and add it to the pot.
Continue to simmer, covered, for another 10 minutes.
Serve over couscous or quinoa and garnish with sliced almonds and fresh cilantro.

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