- 1 large head cauliflower
- 2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 2 Tbsp water
- 2 Tbsp. Shawarma* or curry powder
- See below
- 1-2 Tbsp. Marcea’s North African Spice Paste*
- See below
- 2 tsp maple syrup or coconut sugar
- 1/2 tsp Himalayan salt as needed
Shawarma is a middle eastern street food spice blend. Use it on anything!
- 1/2tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4tsp cardamom (or cloves)
- 1tsp ground coriander
- 1 1/2tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2tsp ground ginger
- 2tsp smoked paprika
- 2Tbsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Method for Shawarma
Add all the spices to a small jar and shake or stir to combine. Will keep at room temperature for several months.
*Marcea’s North African Spice Paste
This spice blend is ideal for seasoning things like roasted vegetables, tofu, tempeh, fish, beans, and more!
- 4 Tbsp chopped ginger root
- 1 Tbsp (heaping) cumin seeds or ground
- 2 tsp coriander seeds
- 1 tsp caraway seeds
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp Himalayan salt or 1 Tbsp. Shiro or Kome miso to taste
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tbsp tomato paste or pasta sauce
- 1/4 cup olive oil
Method for North African Spice Paste
- Chop ginger root. If you’re using whole spices then toast them to bring up the flavour until fragrant.
- Add to a food processor and crush into a fine powder.
- Add caraway seeds, minced garlic, smoked paprika, and salt, and mix
- Add lemon juice and vinegar and process or blend again until you’ve achieved a paste and then add the tomato paste.
- Stream in the olive oil to create a smooth sauce. If using miso, blend it in here. Add more water if needed to get the desired consistency that you want.
- If it’s not spicy enough at this point, you can either add some chili or more ginger root.
- Scoop the extra paste into a jar to store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. If storing in the freezer, scoop into an ice cube tray, freezing, and storing in a freezer-safe container up to 2 months. Add cubes directly to warm foods (like stews or cooked sauces). If adding to cold foods (like dressings or dips), let thaw before adding.
Method for putting it all together
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 C). Also, fill a small baking pan halfway with water and set on the floor (bottom) of the oven. This will provide steam to help the cauliflower cook more evenly.
- Rinse and dry the head of cauliflower and carefully cut off the bottom stalk without removing too much of the core. You want the entire head intact for baking
- Peel away any remaining green leaves and place in a cast-iron skillet
- In a mixing bowl, mix together melted coconut oil, water, spice paste, shawarma, maple syrup, and salt or miso
- Add more liquid to adjust the texture. Taste and adjust flavor if need be.
6. Flip your cauliflower upside down and pour or spoon on most of the sauce
7. Let the sauce pour down the core, shake it around so it infuses the centre, and then flip the cauliflower over and use a brush to coat the leftover sauce (including any that seeped into the pan) all over the outside of the cauliflower for maximum flavour.
8. Place cauliflower core-side down before baking
9. Place skillet (I like solidtechnics cast iron cookware) in oven and bake for 35-50 minutes (depending on size of cauliflower) or until a knife easily pierces the core. If you prefer softer cauliflower, then bake longer. For cauliflower with that’s a little more al dente reduce the baking time.
10. To brown the outside more, increase heat to high and bake 2-4 more minutes, watching carefully as not to burn.
11. Remove from oven and serve with quinoa, vegetables, ferments, and anything else you want. I served it with some quinoa, pumpkin, red and white cabbage sauerkraut, celery, sauteed kale and chickpeas, and a green vegetable sauce.
Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Reheat in a 350-degree F (176 C) oven until hot.