Chermoula Cauliflower Salad

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So did I slack again with recipes?  Okay maybe not that bad this time, I have been cooking but just so hard to have the thought of measuring and keeping it perfect.  Sometimes when you cook to post a recipe on the blog it seems like you are not cooking for yourself, but for others and that too with a million eyes watching you.  Okay maybe I exaggerated a bit here; I might have a total of ten eyes watching me.  Regardless there are people who count on you to make sure that the recipe turns out to be good.  I have been addicted to quinoa and barley lately; in this recipe I have used purple barley.  It does take a little longer for the barley to cook, but it does stay in the fridge and freezer for a long period of time.  So make it in a big batch and freeze it or you can substitute it for whatever grain you prefer.  I made the whole cauliflower and one pound of mushrooms, mine were white mushrooms but you can go with any that you might have or fancy.  As we all know mushrooms usually take on the flavor you give, some just seem to be meatier and nutritionally dense than others.   

Please follow the instructions on the back of the package to cook the choice of grains.  Like I mentioned I am using purple barley and red quinoa here.  The seasoning that I have marinated the cauliflower and mushrooms in is called Chermoula and I have adapted this from Green Kitchen Travels:  Healthy Vegetarian Food. I think the ghee here is what adds the nice flavor to the cauliflower when you bake it in the oven.   You can use Cajun, tandoori, jerk or any other seasoning that you might have around.  The idea here is to have spice flavored vegetables with sweet tangy dressing and earthy grains. 

Ingredients –

Chermoula marinade

  • 3 tbsp. minced garlic (yupp I am always afraid that I might run in to a vampire so am always prepared)
  • 3 tsp. ground cumin
  • 3 tsp. ground coriander
  • 2 tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 2 tsp ground paprika (this is what gives it the nice red color)
  • 3 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • ½ tsp saffron
  • 1 tsp sea salt (more to your liking)
  • Juice of 1-1/2 lemon
  • 4 tbsp. ghee
  • 1 cauliflower
  • 1 lb. mushrooms chopped.
  • Grains –
  • 1 ½ cups cooked purple barley
  • 2 cups cooked red quinoa
  • 4 tbsp. of balsamic vinaigrette
  • 1/3 cup toasted walnuts

Method –

You can bake the whole cauliflower and then separate the florets or you can cut the cauliflower in florets and marinate it.  The choice is your, I cut mine and marinated as I was marinating mushrooms as well.  Mix garlic, cumin, coriander, chili flakes, paprika, ginger, salt, saffron, ghee, and lemon juice.  Give it a good mix, until all the ingredients are combined.  You might want to use your hands for this, if you have kitchen gloves they are the best to work with.  My instructor always said your hands are your best tools, of course they better be clean if you are using them.  I try to use gloves with garlic as the smell of it is hard to get out of your hands. 

Take the marinade and mix it with the cauliflower and mushrooms, let it marinate for about an hour.  If you have time to marinate it more that will just add to the flavor.  Preheat the oven to 350F; roast the vegetables for around 35 minutes.  In the meantime, mix the barley and quinoa together.  Once the vegetables have cooled a bit add it to the party.  Add balsamic vinaigrette, a little at a time you can adjust as per your liking.  I was in a hurry so used it out of a jar, but you can feel free to make your own version.  Top it with the walnuts and mix it all once again. 

The dish is now ready to be served, it does taste better the next day or after.  So make a little extra and enjoy it for lunch or again in your week.  The only fat here is the ghee we added to the roast, but as gramma says your body needs that fat.  Enjoy the dish!

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