Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Roasted Cauliflower

When I was a kid the only way I would eat cauliflower was if it was drowned in cheese sauce. As an adult not much changed and I kind of avoided the stuff. It's not that I dislike it, I just never thought of it as tasty or versatile. So it never really made its way onto my plate very often. But all that changed when I finally tried roasting it. And now I can't believe I wasted so many years not knowing the wondrous flavour of roasted cauliflower.

Once roasted the cauliflower will reveal its full depth of flavour. It's so amazing I'll eat it as a snack. Quite a turn around from my cauli-hating days!

So if you're like me and late to the party, I urge you to give roasted cauliflower a chance. Even if you're an ardent cauliflower hater, you might see it in a whole new light. Feel free to use my recipe or experiment with your own mix of spices. My recipe has a subtle spice flavour and a great hit of citrus. It's an earthy and fresh flavour which works well as a versatile side dish, or a tasty healthy snack. The most important thing about this dish though is to make sure you roast them until they start to darken, right to the point where you worry they might burn. This is how you extract maximum flavour.

Roasted Cauliflower (serves 4)


One head of cauliflower, stem removed, cut into bite-sized pieces
3 tablespoons olive oil (or other oil of your choice)
1 and 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Juice of a large lemon


Preheat oven to 180 Celsius/ 350 Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl: whisk together the oil, paprika, turmeric, salt, pepper and lemon juice.

Add the cauliflower to the bowl and toss to coat.

Lay them out evenly on a roasting tray. Pop it in the oven.

Cook for 30- 40 minutes, give or take. For ultimate flavour cook them until they start to brown...almost to the point of getting burnt. Keep an eye on it. Don't be scared to push it to the limit though, you'll be rewarded with maximum flavour!

Serve with lemon wedges and an extra dusting of paprika.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Cream Cheese Frosting

I have been trying to find a decent carrot cake recipe but haven't found one that blows my socks off yet. The one in the pictures was one I made recently. Yes it was nice, but not overly delicious. So I wont bother sharing the recipe. I love me a good moist carrot cake with the right hit of spice, but for some reason none I've found have hit the spot. So I guess I'll have to start experimenting and hopefully can eventually create my ideal carrot cake. So watch this space.

On the upside, my adventures in finding the perfect carrot cake meant that I had an abundance of cream cheese frosting. Which came in handy, as I just had my wisdom teeth out.

I can not truly describe how amazing it felt to scour the fridge for something I could attempt to eat without the need for chewing, getting discouraged and feeling sorry for myself but then spotting a whole tub of leftover frosting hiding in the corner of the fridge. I swear I could hear a chorus of angels.

So yeah I pretty much downed that whole tub. No guilt. Thankfully it has now been 8 days and I can finally chew again, it's crazy how much you can miss the mere texture of food, let alone the taste, when you've been living on baby food for a week. So ermm today's post is not exactly innovative, nor is it even a meal. However, if you ever find yourself without the ability to chew then I figure it counts. You need to have this recipe in your arsenal. You never know when a little spare pot of cream cheese can save your life. Okay I exaggerate, but getting your wisdom teeth out can be a really  horrible miserable experience, so why not have something to look forward to. For me this was the highlight of my week.

This recipe makes enough to cover a cake, which I suppose could be another practical use. If you must. (It's a decent amount though so you'll still have some leftover.)

Cream Cheese Frosting:


·    450g cream cheese, softened
·    170g unsalted butter, at room temperature
·    3 cups icing (confectioners) sugar
·    1 teaspoon vanilla essence

First make sure your cream cheese and butter are soft, and not straight out of the fridge, this helps prevents lumps. Then combine everything in a mixer, or by hand, and beat until fluffy and smooth. If you've still got pesky lump, just gently heat in microwave for a really short time to melt the lumps. Then, if you need to, chill the frosting for 15 minutes, until it has set to the consistency you need for spreading or pipping.