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Marinated in North African spices, this delicious dish is a feast for both the eyes and the belly. Not just for veggies, everyone will want a slice!
* Note: marinading time required *
First, make the harissa spice blend by toasting the whole seeds (coriander, cumin, fennel, caraway) in a dry pan on a medium heat until fragrant but not coloured. Decant into a heavy mortar with the sea salt and pepper and grind with a pestle until finely ground. Add in the pre-ground spices (paprika, garlic powder, cayenne) towards the end. Store in a jar but first add 2 tbsp of the spice blend to a couple of tbsp of the organic natural yoghurt.
Prepare your organic cauliflower by taking off the outer leaves and cutting a little into the base so that the whole cauliflower sits flat. Get a heavy lipped dish or small pot and cover the cauliflower in the spiced yoghurt mix (upside down can be a good idea), then cover with cling film and keep in the fridge. Marinade overnight for best results, but if you can’t wait that long give it as many hours as possible.
Take out of the fridge 20 minutes before baking as the oven pre-heats to 160ºC.
Bake for 45-75 minutes (depending on size), checking after 30 minutes and every 15 minutes afterwards to ensure there’s even colouring. The yoghurt marinade will go hard and golden whilst the interior of the cauliflower will be soft when a skewer is inserted. Allow to cool for 10 minutes or so whilst you prepare everything else.
As the cauliflower bakes, prepare a harissa oil by adding 1-2 tsp of the spice blend to 2-3 tbsp of organic rapeseed oil. Make your pesto by grinding pine nuts, coarse salt and basil leaves in a mortar whilst gradually adding organic rapeseed oil until it becomes a thin drizzling consistency. Add a dash of organic cider vinegar to balance the flavour.
Toast your flaked almonds on a dry pan over a medium-low heat, keeping an eye as they will colour quickly. You want a light golden hue to the flaked nuts. Also use this time to remove the seeds from the pomegranate – the easiest way to do this is slice the fruit in half, hold your hand over the exposed part of one, invert and tap with a wooden spoon then repeat with the over half. Remove any pith that falls from the fruit.
Serve the spiced baked whole cauliflower warm, drizzled with extra natural yoghurt thinned with a little water, the basil pesto and the harissa oil. Finally, top with a scattering of both the flaked almonds and the pomegranate seeds.