Serves 4

How about a little bit of cauliflower head tonight. This vibrant yellow fragrant cauliflower comes from the infusion of coconut milk, turmeric, Thai red chili and mustard seeds, finished with freshly chopped cilantro and mint - this makes for a perfect meatless Monday recipe. Did I say it was vegan! Yes it is - and as always it's very easy to make and I'm sure the whole family will love to try this for dinner tonight.

The nutrition profile of cauliflower is very impressive.
Cauliflower is very low in calories yet high in vitamins. In fact, cauliflower contains some of almost every vitamin and mineral that you need.

1 cup, or 128 grams, of raw cauliflower:
Calories: 25
Fiber: 3 grams
Vitamin C: 77% of the RDI
Vitamin K: 20% of the RDI
Vitamin B6: 11% of the RDI
Folate: 14% of the RDI
Pantothenic acid: 7% of the RDI
Potassium: 9% of the RDI
Manganese: 8% of the RDI
Magnesium: 4% of the RDI
Phosphorus: 4% of the RDI

Turmeric may help prevent heart disease, heart attack and stroke with its effects on some key risk factors of these three conditions. It may help stop atherosclerosis, the buildup of arterial plaque and it may help prevent blood clots, to the lowering of LDL, or "bad" cholesterol levels, as a possible benefit of turmeric. Turmeric may help prevent, manage and treat various forms of cancer, including skin, breast, prostate and colon cancer. However, evidence has only been found in test tube and animal studies so far. The antioxidant properties of turmeric are believed to be at least partially responsible for its anti-cancer activities.

Spiced Coconut Baked Cauliflower
Serves 4

1 large cauliflower, left whole
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 inch piece fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
4 small Thai red chilies, finely chopped and seeds removed or 1 medium size jalapeno
4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1x 13floz can coconut milk
1lb fingerling potatoes, washed, cut in half
½lb small carrots, washed and left whole
1 lemon, halved
1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro (optional)
1 tablespoon freshly chopped mint (optional)

Pre heat oven to 380'F
How to make:

Remove any large leaves from the cauliflower head. Turn the cauliflower upside down and, using a small paring knife, carefully cut a hollow in the middle of the central stalk to help the cauliflower cook evenly.

Place a large saucepan ¾ full of water on the stove over a high heat, when the water starts to boil, add ½ teaspoon of salt, then gently lower the cauliflower into the boiling water and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, drain the water off the cauliflower, leave the cauliflower in the pan and place on a lid to allow the cauliflower to steam for 10 minutes.

Take a medium size saucepan, place over a medium heat on the stove, add the coconut oil, then the ginger, chili and garlic, and gently cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Then add the mustard seeds, turmeric and season with salt and pepper, stir well and cook for 2 more minutes, add the coconut milk and bring to a boil.

Place the cauliflower into a roasting tray, pour over the hot coconut milk. Scatter the potatoes and carrots around the cauliflower so they sit in the coconut milk, then add the lemon halves. Place the tray into the oven and roast for 45 minutes, every 15 minutes baste the cauliflower with the coconut milk.

To test if the cauliflower is cooked, insert a small sharp knife into the middle - it should be really tender and the potatoes and carrots will have soaked up most of the sauce. Remove the tray from the oven, squeeze the lemons over the cauliflower, scatter over the chopped cilantro, mint and serve.

Chef Mark .

Copyright © 2018 - 2020 Mark Allison