This take on roasted cauliflower uses an elaborate sauce that’s well worth the work. As Chef David Hawsworth writes in Hawksworth: The Cookbook (filled with the Vancouver chef’s acclaimed restaurants’ most beloved dishes), “This vividly green and brightly flavoured variation on harissa – with fresh herbs and jalapeño – adds vibrancy to sweet roasted cauliflower.”
“For a more colourful version,” he adds, “use purple or orange cauliflower or even Romanesco – or a mix.”
Roasted Cauliflower, Green Harissa & Sunflower Seeds
- 8 jalapeno peppers stems removed
- 1 1⁄2 tbsp coriander seeds
- 1 1⁄2 tbsp cumin seeds
- 1 1⁄4 cups olive oil
- 1 1⁄3 cups coarsely chopped cilantro
- 1 1⁄3 cups coarsely chopped parsley
- 5 scallions chopped
- 3 cloves garlic coarsely chopped
- 1 shallot coarsely chopped
- 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
- 1 1⁄4 tsp salt
Toasted Sunflower Seeds
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1⁄3 cup sunflower seeds
- 1 very large head cauliflower cut in golf ball–sized florets, cleaned and patted dry
- olive oil for drizzling
- salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 230°C (450°F). Split 5 of the jalapenõ peppers and remove the seeds.
- Place peppers on a baking tray lined with parchment paper. Roast until blistered and golden brown, about 6 minutes. Set aside to cool. Leave the oven on for the cauliflower.
- Toast the coriander and cumin until fragrant and light brown in a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat, about 1 minute. Set aside to cool.
- Place the cooled jalapenõs and spices in a blender or food processor with the remaining raw jalapenõs, oil, cilantro, parsley, scallions, garlic, shallots, sherry vinegar, and salt.
- Blitz until smooth but with small visible specks, like a pesto. Set aside.
- In a separate sauté pan or skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the sunflower seeds and stir until rich golden brown, about 5 minutes. Season with salt. Set aside to cool.
- Drizzle the cauliflower with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake until dark golden brown at the edges, 15 to 20 minutes, turning once or twice during the cooking. Place the cauliflower in a serving dish. Generously spoon over some of the harissa and sprinkle with toasted sunflower seeds.