I know I’ve been banging on about it all summer but I’m really trying to increase my repertoire of recipes that require prepping only. Foods that are enzyme rich and flavour full. No pans to wash with heat hardened onions welded like rocks to the bottom, or ages spent stirring sauces or heating ovens. But I’m thriving on it. So for the moment I’ll continue to use pans to make like drums and keep my food as nature intended.
The raw food scene (don’t cook it just ‘collate’ it) seems to be awash with the most amazing desserts you’ll ever eat and a healthy abundance of wraps, but I find the quantity of mains and entree recipes a bit spare.
I savour the exotic spice combinations that typify the worlds cultural cuisine. Just because a dish is known in its cooked form, doesn’t mean it can’t rock raw! I think this dish may just be proof of that. Of course you can’t compere the flavours of something cooked low for hours allowing the flavours to develop slowly. Today I’ve a tagine that will evoke the aromatic spices of Africa, but it is different. Think of it like twins. The same, but with personalities of individual nature. Both are great, in their own way.
Zesty, aromatic – RAW CAULIFLOWER TAGINE
Serves 4 HEALTHY -low carb, vegan, gluten free, soy free, low fat
1 organic cauliflower cut into small bite size florets
1 large carrot diced small
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes soaked for 30 mins (the unsalted dried ones not in oil are best)
2 large ripe tomatoes (seeded centres removed, or tagine will be too wet )
2 cloves garlic
4 dried dates chopped
2 Tbs pine nuts (you can lightly toast for extra crunch if you desire)
1/4 inch of fresh ginger
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp cumin powder (or cumin seeds roasted and ground)
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp coriander powder
1 Tbs chopped fresh mint – plus a few leaves for garnish
zest of small orange
1 Tbs fresh orange juice
1 tsp Himalayan or sea salt
*Optional (but enriches the sauce) – 2 Tbs EVOO or hemp oil. Hemp has nutritionally better balanced Omegas.
1. put all ingredients (except carrot, cauliflower, dates, pine nuts and zest) into a blender. Rough chop them to so you can pulse lightly and still keep the layers of flavours distinct. Do blend to a sauce but just stop when it reaches this stage.
2. Pour sauce into a mixing bowl and add the zest and remaining chopped mint to the sauce, along with your diced carrot and cauliflower, pine nuts and chopped dates and mix until you’ve coated all of the vegetables. You could of course add other vegetables but I wanted the cauliflower and flavours of the sweet, tangy sauce to be centre stage.
I served my tagine with a green salad with an orange vinaigrette. All in all it took about 15 minutes to gather the ingredients and prepare the finished dish. It’s a bit of a flavour circus. The diced veggies are a marching band, and then the zest swings through the arena like a trapeze act. Whilst the man breathing fire blows a gentle warm spice breath over the whole proceedings. Actually, perhaps you don’t want to conjure up thought of a stranger blowing over your food…so scrap that. Dream up with your own simile.
I took the dish to a potluck and it garnered appreciative murmurs. I hope I’ve convinced you to give it a try. Please come back and let me know if you do. Comments make me happy! Feed my happy habit!
p.s you could of course use the ingredients and cook them for 30 mins if you wanted. Or, to retain all the goodness but concentrate the flavours, use your dehydrator for 5 hours or so. But please, do add the zest and mint at the last moments so they don’t get lost in the melee. I loved this dish just the way it was.
p.s.s I’m a bit cauliflower obsessed at the moment so I’ve a few more rather good recipes up my sleeve. I’ll be sharing with you soon.