This is the cauliflower salad from Ottolenghi Simple, and it’s already vegetarian and dairy free without any adjustments. It’s a mix of roasted and raw cauliflower, creating an interesting textural contrast, and has a simple dressing of lemon juice, cumin, and olive oil.
As noted in the back of the book, many of the recipes in Simple are plant based. Most of them are not, however, full main dishes for vegetarians without some adjustments.
Ottolenghi often notes to serve the veg dishes alongside chicken or lamb to make a full meal – but they can just as easily be served with something like red lentil patties instead. In the case of this cauliflower salad, next time I make it I’ll just toss a cup of cooked chickpeas in with the cauliflower to roast.
The salad doesn’t use any harder to find ingredients, simply spiced with salt and cumin. I even reduced the number of herbs down to just parsley because I couldn’t get fresh mint or tarragon and it was still delicious. I also chopped the parsley more finely because Graham brought curly parsley home instead of flat-leaf and it’s a bit unpleasant when roughly chopped.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
- Cauliflower: you’ll need a very large head of cauliflower, about 800 grams, so this might actually mean two normally sized heads if you’re buying organic cauliflower.
- Herbs: as mentioned, I didn’t have access to all three herbs when I shot the recipe, and it was great with just parsley.
- Pomegranate: if this isn’t in season when cauliflower is, use dried cranberries instead.
The book says that the cauliflower leaves should also be roasted alongside the florets. For the salad pictured, I didn’t include the leaves as they weren’t in good enough condition to use. If your cauliflower is very fresh, use the leaves (reduce that food waste!).
Store and Make Ahead
Make Ahead: the headnote for the recipe states that if you want to get ahead, roast the cauliflower up to 4-6 hours in advance. Keep at room temperature and then just combine with the remaining ingredients when ready to serve.
Storage: this can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days, but tastes best at room temperature or slightly warm.
Freezing: I don’t recommend freezing this recipe.
- Serve warm: the book calls for the cauliflower to cool before serving the salad, but it’s excellent served warm, too.
- Add chickpeas: as mentioned above, chickpeas are a good addition if you want to make a full meal. Since first sharing this recipe, I’ve made it several more times, and usually do add chickpeas with the cauliflower to roast.
More Cauliflower Recipes
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Cauliflower, Pomegranate, and Pistachio Salad
- 1 extra large cauliflower ~800 grams
- 1 small onion roughly sliced, ~130 grams
- 80 ml olive oil
- sea salt
- 25 grams parsley roughly chopped
- 10 grams mint roughly chopped
- 10 grams tarragon roughly chopped
- ~80 grams pomegranate seeds from 1/2 medium pomegranate
- 40 grams shelled pistachios lightly toasted and roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 ½ tablespoons lemon juice
- Preheat the oven to 220°C (425°F).
- Coarsely grate a third of the cauliflower and set aside in a bowl. Break the remaining cauliflower into florets, roughly 1 1/4 inches/3cm wide, and add these to a separate bowl with the cauliflower leaves, if you have any, and the onion. Toss everything together with 2 tablespoons of oil and 1/2 teaspoon of salt, then spread out on a large parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast for about 20 minutes, until cooked through and golden brown. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.1 extra large cauliflower, 1 small onion, 80 ml olive oil, sea salt
- Once cool, put the roasted vegetables into a large bowl with the 3 tablespoons/50ml oil, the grated cauliflower, and parsley, mint, tarragon, pomegranate seeds, pistachios, cumin, and lemon juice, along with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Toss gently, just to combine, then transfer to a platter and serve.25 grams parsley, 10 grams mint, 10 grams tarragon, ~80 grams pomegranate seeds, 40 grams shelled pistachios, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice, sea salt
* For American cup measurements, please click the pink link text above the ingredient list that says ‘American’.
Nutrition is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate. If this information is important to you, please have it verified independently.