Cauliflower with Saffron, Pinenuts and Raisins.

There is more to a cauliflower than gratin. This wonderful dish comes from Rimini, with clear Sicilian and North African influences elevates the cauliflower to new heights. Eat just warm as a vegetable salad or as accompaniment.

Origin: Italy
Serves 4
Preparation time: 5-7mins
Cooking time: 30-35 mins
Level of Diffulty: Easy

Serves4 Origin Europe
Preparation 5-7 min Heat rating (Mild)
Cooking 30-35 min Ease (Very easy)
Vegetarian Yes


4 strands Saffron, organic
infused in 4 tbsp boiling water
1 medium cauliflower, broken into small florets (keep the smallest leaves)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, thinly sliced
3 tbsp pine nuts, lightly toasted
75g raisins, soaked in warm water
Sea salt and black pepper


Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Add the cauliflower, replace lid and bring to the boil again. Blanch the cauliflower for a minute, then drain and set aside to dry out.
Heat 2 tbsps oil in a heavy saucepan until hot, then add the onion with a pinch of salt. Stir well, reduce the heat to low and cook very slowly for 15-20 minutes until golden in colour and sweet in smell. Stir the onions every few minutes so they cook evenly and do not stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove the onions with a slotted spoon to retain the oil, and to it a further 1 tbsp.
Over a high heat add the cauliflower and the small leaves to the hot oil. Fry until the cauliflower begins to colour, then add the onion, the saffron-infused water, the pinenuts and drained raisins. Give everything a good toss and cook for five more minutes until the saffron water has more or less evaporated. Season and serve. This is a perfect accompaniment to roasted/grilled fish or meat.

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