cauliflower with lemon and chili’s

November 21, 2014 § 82 Comments


I have this funny thing about recipes.  When I find one I like I get stuck on it and make it over and over again for weeks.    Well, repetition is the mother of skill, right?  Reruns of last week’s dinner gives me time to learn the recipe so I can make it without following directions, and there is usually some sort of modification made to suit our own taste. This is definitely one of those recipes.  After making it for the fourth time I decided I had to make it again but only this time take photo’s and post it, because it is delicious and you should try it.


Speaking of repetition, I baked four apple pies in two weeks!  Pie number one was inspired by some gorgeous winesap apples I happened upon at the market.  I baked a lovely pie and after dinner that evening it was a little late to eat a slice and I imagined how nice it will be the next day.  Well, the next morning I got up to an empty pie plate.  Yes, my son ate the whole pie in one evening.  How?!  So I baked pie number two, this time using granny smith apples and I made sure to have a slice.  I was very unhappy with the mushy apple texture, so a few days later I baked pie number three, this time using honey crisp apples.  Third time’s a charm!  The apples held their texture and they were naturally sweet enough that I only added a tablespoon of sugar to the apples.  Indeed another lovely pie.  And then pie number four was the result of another visit to the market where I had originally picked up the gorgeous winesap apples.  Once again I couldn’t pass them up and fact of the matter, I was still trying to get over missing out on a slice of pie number one.  See what I mean about getting stuck on a recipe?

Back to the cauliflower with lemon and chili’s…


Chopping the cauliflower into tiny bits creates a nutty non-cruciferous flavor.  If you or someone you cook for doesn’t like cauliflower you could try serving this.  They will be surprised they are eating cauliflower.  The little cauliflower bits will make you think you are eating cous cous.   This nutty cauliflower dish has a perfectly balanced touch of heat from the red jalapeños and a bit of tang from the lemon.

Recipe slightly adapted from Taste Food Blog posted by Lynda Balslev.   A lovely blog, I hope you will visit.

I n g r e d i e n t s

  • 1 head cauliflower, chopped into tiny bits
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 red or green jalapeño pepper,  remove seeds, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (or lime)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

If you have a food processor, pulse the florets until they are finely chopped.  Otherwise chop the cauliflower until it closely resembles cous cous.  I left out the thicker stem part and will add them to a soup later. Heat the oil and melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the cauliflower and salt and cook for 5 – 7 minutes.  Add the garlic, red chili flakes, paprika and cumin.   Combine well and continue to cook for 5 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender.  Remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients.  Serves 4.



§ 82 Responses to cauliflower with lemon and chili’s

  • Cecile says:

    I like cauliflower and this recipe looks great! I’m old enough to know when people would boil the ‘living hell’ out of cauliflower, turnip and broccoli – which was really a shame because, when cooked properly, they’re delicious. As you know !!!

  • Amanda says:

    Wow 4 apple pies! That’s awesome. I love this cauliflower recipe because of the jalapenos and lemon. But your flavor combos here are perfect. I’m going to give this a shot. Hope you’re doing well!

    • Hi Amanda! This is seriously good. I have used lemon and lime for this and it’s equally delicious. I must say that hand chopping the cauliflower is a task, especially with the little bits falling all over the floor! I hope raw cauliflower is ok for dogs. :) Sometimes I wish I had a food processor…but then, it’s always a pleasure to handle the food and take your time preparing it, right? Always great to hear from you!

  • cheri says:

    I like the way you cook, repetition is good. Checked out the taste food blog and fell in love instantly, thanks! Happy Holidays to you and your family!!

  • Karen says:

    I happen to have a cauliflower in the refrigerator and your dish certainly looks like a great way to use it. Great timing on my part. :D

    • I’d say fantastic timing. This is a brilliant way to eat cauliflower. You will absolutely love it Karen. Thank you for stopping in this morning. :) Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  • Karen says:

    Sounds fantastic and I’ll take one apple pie, please. Hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving!

  • That’s funny, I do a lot of repetition with recipes too. This looks like a great way to eat cauliflower and give it flavor!

  • I love this stuff. I call it cauli-cous because I think making up names for stuff makes me seem cool :)
    With four apple pies you could almost pop one in the mail for me!!

  • This is such a good recipe full of flavors Seana! So aromatic and so good!

    • Hi Sonal! I think of you now and again…thank you for saying hi! :)

      • Seana, i miss your presence often on wordpress! My interaction has gone down. But recetky i made anither dal n naan combination and dedicated to you :). Do check that when you get time :).
        Love n hugs!

      • Really? I will come over and visit. :) I have made chana dal several times in the past few weeks. My son can’t get enough of it. It’s his favorite dinner right now. Last night I made a wonderful chickpea recipe and for the first time I mixed ras el hanout. Hope the photo’s turned out because I hope to post it. I’ll try to keep in better touch!

  • Saskia (1=2) says:

    OMG your son ate an entire pie in one night? You are a scary window into my future as my 10 year old already eats like a horse.
    Love the sound of the cauliflower recipe. Lemon + red pepper flakes is one of my fave combinations. I’m yet to try ricing cauliflower but you’ve inspired me.
    PS. Seana, I am *loving* my Oxo Julienne Peeler. Thanks for the tip. Lately I’ve been making carrot ‘hair’ for my boy’s amusement.

    • Love the sound of carrot ‘hair’! :) We are constantly using the julienne peeler. Just the other day we julienned carrots then chopped them into little bits for a salad. It was my son’s idea…he made us a BLT salad for dinner. And yes, your day is coming…a whole pie goes down quite easily for a 16 year old boy! It’s unbelievable.

  • Nancy says:

    It’s always nice to stumble across a recipe that has been tried and tested. Somehow, it makes me want to make it all the more. :) This cauliflower dish looks fabulous, Seana. It sounds deliciously spiced as well – I love a bit of heat! Thanks for sharing the recipe.

    • Hi Nancy! Thank you so much both for your sweet comment and for stopping by. I love a bit of heat too and especially with a little tang from lemon or lime…then add cilantro and perfecto! :)

  • I have been all over the cauliflower “rice”. First I was mashing them like potatoes with garlic and olive oil- and now it’s grating- Not only does it taste good but I can eat like a whole head of it without guilt… (except for the bubbly tummy).
    This will be a good tasting rendition to try! cheers… wendy

    • Now there’s a good idea…grating the cauliflower. Much easier than my method of finely chopping the whole head! I agree. I could eat the whole head too, and then wonder what caused the grumbly stomach! Actually mashing them like potatoes sound really good. I think I’ll try that, especially with garlic & olio. Thank you Wendy!

  • ladyredspecs says:

    You really are the vegie queen Seana. Cauliflower has just about finished it’s season here but have bookmarked this to try in 6 months time

  • I just adore your cauliflower dish Seana, cauliflower rice or cos cous is wonderful, the dish sounds so flavorful. 4 pies, you go girl, apple pie is one of my favorites.

  • Isn’t cauliflower just great with lemon? Recently I made it with lots of spice – shop-bought! Was feeling lazy that night and couldn’t get it together to dry roast and grind spices so I chucked in already made curry and garam masala powders (plus others) and it turned out really well. Making that again this weekend. Like you I love repeating certain recipes. Oh, you make me laugh! I was the same as your son. If I couldn’t sleep I’d raid the scullery (pantry) and wolf through family sized tins of fruit. Would still do that!

    • So you understand! I find empty yogurt containers on the counter in the morning too. I think he’s doing the same thing you did. Waking up in the middle of the night and eating. Cracked me that you would eat the large tins of fruit! I’m with you…I really like those too, especially the peaches. My mom would serve them with a little cream or milk. :)

  • I am not surprised that your son ate the first pie overnight. Those appetites are unbelievable!! I love the flavours in your cauliflower and must try it when I have my veggie friend round though I do think this would be nice with fish too. Now I have to go off and deal with my craving for apple pie!!!

  • hellotofit says:

    Have not done cauliflower “rice” before, but looks like a yummy alternative, and versatile! Thanks for sharing!!

  • What a beautiful post Seana! I imagine this dish might be quite lovely to serve cold/room temp as well, with us going into summer… what do you think? Happy to hear that you got a slice of that pie in the end! ;)

    • Yes Margot, room temp works well with this. I had a bit of it leftover for lunch the next day and it was great. I bet you are really enjoying the warmer weather and your lovely garden! :)

  • Liz says:

    cracking me up that your son ate an entire pie in one evening! He’s so lucky to have you as his mom. It’s all gorgeous here. Kudos for keeping on with the same recipe. I should definitely do the same, but so rarely even have the luxury of using a recipe. I will use recipes vicariously through you and your gorgeous photos :-)

  • Michelle says:

    Ha! My mother used to do that. She’d find a recipe she loved. We’d have it over and over again for a few weeks, and then she’d be sick of it and it would never return (much to our dismay)! That one looks like a real keeper though.

  • Looks great! So interesting how the flavor of cauliflower changes with the cutting. I’ll have to try this recipe!

  • “Repetition is the mother of skill”?? I think you’ve coined a new phrase!! I do that rerun thing too. If I like it, I think everyone else who crosses my table should give it a try! oh, and the cauliflower looks super!!

  • reggiorif says:

    I have the same thing about remaking a new found recipe over and over in a short period of time. True, it’s practice and when you like something, it’s hard to resist. This cauliflower recipe looks so tasty. I really want to give it a try.

  • Sophie33 says:

    A lovely cauliflower dish! yesterday, we ate cooked cauliflower mashed with fresh rocket leaves & sundered tomatoes & home-made sliced up chicken meatballs! It was divine too so I now that I must love your beautiful dish too!

  • Love this Seana. I think cauliflower is such a versatile vegetable. So many ways to use it. I love it with curry seasonings but chili and lemon sounds BEAUTIFUL. Remember I was supposed to make cauliflower risotto? I thought of you when I chopped the cauliflower up to make aloo gobi instead. I’ll get there yet.
    Also love the story about the apple pies. I don’t know winesap apples but I do know and love honey crisp. I also tend to make things over and over until everyone asks if I can make anything else. I’m stuck on fruit crumbles at the moment – some of the garden rhubarb (frozen), a couple of nice apples sliced, some fresh cranberries, some frozen blueberries – no sugar – and then a topping of oatmeal, brown sugar and butter. I make it over and over and over. SO tart. So tasty.
    But never mind me – this is supposed to be about you! ;) Great post. And happy to see you.

    • I had to chuckle because I love to hear from you and about you! Sometimes I think you and I are cut from the same mold. :) I do remember you were going make cauliflower risotto and I hope you still do. Your crisps are right up my alley. I love tart with oatmeal, brown sugar and butter. I think it’s a perfect combination. And I am especially keen on the “no sugar” part for the filling. I barely sweeten my pies and crumbles, even pumpkin pie! I’m headed over your way now to see if I’ve missed a post. Have a lovely day Lindy.

  • so healthy! sounds delicious!

  • Seana, I love the recipe, so simple and delicious! Beautiful pictures!!

  • Hi CGC!

    Apple pie? Oh, my. My mother spent years perfecting her pie crusts. We had pies every week. My favorite were the apple ones, because I loved how the spices melted into the crust. My parents would wake up to some mouse have eaten all the crusts, having left the filling in the pie tin. I understand how your son ate the whole pie in one sitting. When you start, it’s hard to stop.

    That cauliflower salad looks very refreshing and a super nice change to cooked cauliflower, which I love too.

    Have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

    ~Janet @ The Kitchen Bridge

    • Hi Janet! Great to see you with a new blog! I was wondering what your next project was going to be after your Happy Days. This is a wonderful idea and I look forward to reading your stories. Funny story about the mouse eating the pie crust! Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  • I love cauliflower, cooked or raw.. it’s always worth have it in the fridge! Thanks a lot for this salad, I’m going to make it asap! Thanks for the name of the other blog, I like discovering new “spaces”!

  • Hi Seana, great cauliflower recipe and I totally admire your chopping-handiwork here. Hope you are doing fine and taken a little holiday, Happy New Year. N xx

  • Karinna says:

    I just popped over to see if I’d missed anything from you during my own couple of month blog-break… I hope you’re back with us before too long. I find your recipes very inspiring, this one is no exception… Do you eat it warm or let it cool? Sending you best wishes! K

    • Hi Karinna! So nice of you to stop by…thank you. This cauliflower is good either warm or room temperature. It’s delicious! I have found myself taking a break too. I’ll be back for sure…I just renewed wordpress so I’m inspired to start posting again. :)

  • milkandbun says:

    Hi Seana! Another tasty veg-recipe! :)I love cauliflower, too, make cream-soups and bakes pretty often, but never tried such ‘rice’ version, sounds really nice and with all those flavours! yum!
    And that apple pie must be soooo delicious..? :D Did you make the pastry yourself? do you have the recipe in your blog?.. :)

  • I really seem to be into cauliflower lately. This sounds delicious. Hugs!

  • df says:

    I love the flavours here as well as the idea of chopping up the cauliflower so finely (something I’d never have thought of doing). Sounds delicious!

    • Really is a delicious way to enjoy cauliflower. I have heard ever folks who don’t care for cauliflower like it when it’s chopped so finely and sauteed. It sort of removes that cruciferous flavor. It’s very nutty and wonderful. Thank you for stopping in. :)

  • elyann14 says:

    This recipe is for me! I don’t like cauliflower, so if I try it made this way I might end up enjoying it!

  • I just realized I hadn’t stopped by for awhile and I got the biggest kick out of this post – I get “stuck” too, too, often on recipes – whether they are just so good I have to have them again or whether I’m just trying to perfect! And I wonder, could our sons be related!!?? LOL!

    I had tried a dish something like this once, but it didn’t have all the flavorful elements – I can’t wait to make it!

    • So your son can consume mass quantities of food too? It’s unbelievable at times! Hope you make your next cauliflower like this. It’s really good. It takes a bit to chop it up into little bits though, if you don’t have a food processor to do it for you. Great to see you here today. Thank you for stopping in. :)

  • I’ve never heard about this way of eating cauliflower, but since I love it a lot raw, I bet this recipe suits perfect my taste! So easy and so original!

  • Sorry, I sent the message before finishing it… I wanted to say that finally I’m going to prepare it tonight!

  • Karinna says:

    I was just checking back to make sure you hadn’t started posting again without me noticing… I miss your recipes! Hope you are doing well and look forward to seeing posts from you again at some point, fingers crossed ;)

    • You are so sweet Karinna! Thank you for leaving me such a kind message. I am working on getting some posts together. It amazing how missing a few monts really takes so much effort to gain momentum again. I miss posting and talking with all my blogging friends. :) Nice to hear from you!

  • Guess who has a beautiful head of cauliflower waiting to be used? Me! :-)

your thoughts....

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

What’s this?

You are currently reading cauliflower with lemon and chili’s at COTTAGE GROVE HOUSE.


%d bloggers like this: