African Spiced Cauliflower Grain


I have tried a few ways to encourage my family to embrace the cauliflower in to their diets. They are quite polite though and do eat the varied ways this appears on their plates without too much complaint. This dish however, was a winner. By preparing the cauliflower in this way, the "rotten vegetable" aroma it seems to permeate, is some how removed and it becomes moreishly delicious. So, much so, I almost ate the whole lot as a dish on it's own.

If you too, have had limited success with creating cauliflower rice or couscous, try this one. Delicately flavoured with garlic and coconut, it seems to take this vegetable to a new status of proper taste!

Recipe & Instructions

Serves 4

For the "Rice"
1 medium head raw Cauliflower, cut in to florets
1 tsp Coconut Oil
2 Garlic Cloves, crushed
½ tsp Sea Salt

For The Vegetable Mix
200g Butternut Squash and/or Sweet Potatoe, diced
1 Red Bell Pepper, cut in to small squares
1 Yellow Pepper, cut in to small squares
2 Red Onions, halved and sliced
1x tin Chickpeas (reserve the water for a recipe using Aquafaba)
2 tsp Coconut Oil
2 tbsp Pine Nuts
1 small bunch fresh Parsley

(4 small Chicken Breasts, 1 tsp Olive Oil, 1 tsp Sumac - optional)

For the Dry Spice Blend
½ tsp ground Cinnamon
½ tsp ground Cumin
2 tsp Sumac
3 tsp Sesame Seeds
½ tsp Garlic Salt
½ tsp Fennel Seeds
1 tsp dried chopped Thyme
1 tsp dried chopped Oregano or Marjoram


Mix the spice ingredients together and place in a small container. Heat the coconut oil until it is liquid and then stir in the spices. On a large baking sheet, lined with silicone or foil, tip all of the vegetables and then pour over the coconut oil/spice mix. Combine thoroughly to ensure all the vegetables are coated.

Place the baking tray in to a preheated oven at 400°F/200°C/Gas Mark 6 and roast the vegetables for about 30 minutes, until softened and cooked. Remove and stir in the chickpeas, mixing thoroughly to ensure all the oils and spiced cover them. Cool a little.

Place the florets of cauliflower in to a food processor and "whizz" for 5-10 seconds. It should like small grains of rice. Don't over process or the cauliflower will end up like powder.

In a large saucepan, heat the 1 tsp coconut oil and crushed garlic and cook over a low heat for 1-2 minutes to start releasing the flavor of the garlic. Tip in the cauliflower and the salt and stir over a medium heat for 4-5 minutes, until the cauliflower is heated through and slightly softer. You don't want to over cook this, as the cauliflower will become too soft.

If you are serving this with a chicken breast, flatten the chicken between two sheets of cling film and grill with a rub of oil and sumac.

In a large serving bowl, tip the cauliflower and vegetables together, combining well. Toast the pine nuts in a dry pan or under a hot grill (carefully as these burn very quickly!).

Divide the "couscous" between 4 plates or bowls, and sprinkle over the pine nuts and parsley.

Nutritional Value

Calories Per Serving - 326 (without chicken)
Protein - 14.2g (49.4g with chicken)
Carbohydrate - 53.6g
Fat - 11.2g