There was a bit of an internet kerfuffle during the week over pre-packaged cauliflower steaks sold by M&S. I'm not going to get into the politics of pre-packaged food here. Mostly because Amy Jones does a far better job at The Pool, with her article Pre-prepared vegetables are a vital product, not a frivolous waste, which is absolutely worth a read.
Anyway. It was interesting timing, because a few days earlier I'd tried making roasted cauliflower for the first time (yes, I know). Having enjoyed that enough to buy a second cauliflower to roast, and read the inevitable Guardian article about making your own cauliflower steaks I thought I'd give cauliflower steaks a try.
I did a bit of a google and found a ton of things, and then remembered the recipe for baked feta (from Thomasina Miers book: Wahaca - Mexican Food at Home) we tried on Hogmanay (which went down a storm) and decided to see what would happen if I used that as a base.
The result worked way better than I hoped. It was super tasty. The combination of the slightly sweet cauliflower, the slightly tart dressing and the slightly salty feta worked really well. So well I did it again a couple of days later with the rest of the cauliflower and feta.
It seems only fair to share. So here's what I did:
Turned the oven on to 180 degrees to heat up.
I found a vessel suitable for making a marinade/dressing/whatever the hell you call it, and into it I put the following:
- Some extra-virgin olive oil
- Some garlic puree
- A pinch of chilli flakes
- A wee shake of dried thyme and oregano
- The juice and zest of one lime
Then I stirred it up and put it to one side while I prepared the cauliflower and feta.
Cauliflower prep was taking the leaves off, and cutting the stalk down until the cauliflower would sit on the table like a brain. Then I cut it into five slices.
Feta prep was cutting a block of feta in half and then cutting that half into cubes.
I took a ceramic rectangular baking dish out of the cupboard and added the cauliflower and feta to it, making sure that they were spread out and not overlapping.
By this time the oven was hot enough and I put it in for ten minutes. When the timer went off I took it out and flipped over the cauliflower steak and then put it back in for another ten minutes. When the timer went off after the second ten minutes I tested the cauli with a fork to see if it was done, and it was a little firm still, so I put it back in for five minutes.
The second time I did it I put the cauli steaks in the dish and microwaved them for 4 minutes before adding the feta and dressing. I then baked the whole thing for 20 minutes, turning half way through. The cauliflower was possibly borderline too soft, so if I was doing it again, I'd probably cut that down to 15 or 16 minutes.
After that, all that's left is to eat it. So we did.