Whole roasted cauliflower with cumin-coriander butter

This signature dish is by chef Benjamin Hübner — friend, food collaborator and a familiar face on the Frankfurt dining scene. It looks fancy, yet is a simple, two-step dish — you'll never guess how much life this spice-infused, citrusy butter brings to humble cauliflower! This is a crowd-pleaser: Serve with some naan and eating straight with your fingers!

 

Whole roasted cauliflower with coriander-cumin butter

One medium-sized cauliflower, around 500gm
3 tablespoons sunflower or rapeseed oil
1 teaspoon coriander seeds/ 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon cumin seeds/ 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 1/4 teaspoon Pragati turmeric
100 gm butter
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
Salt to taste
Fresh coriander and basil leaves to serve, optional

 

 

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C.

Remove most of the green leafy bits from cauliflower, leaving one or two behind — these will add nice texture to the finished dish. Place in a deep baking pan, drizzle the oil over the top trying to divide it as evenly as possible, and sprinkle over with 1 teaspoon salt. Pour 100 ml of water into the baking dish and bake uncovered, in the middle rack, for 60—70 minutes or until tender. Halfway through, rotate the pan and if you feel like the top's getting too brown, move it a rack lower. As a test, insert a fork into the middle of the cauliflower: If it goes through cleanly, it will be tender and yet have some crunch.

 

 

Meanwhile, make the herb butter: Grind together the cumin and coriander seeds using a mortar and pestle or a coffee grinder (if using ground spices, skip this step). In a small pan or saucepan, heat the butter on a medium flame until it comes to a foamy gentle boil (see image below), about 5 minutes. Add the ground spices, turmeric, lemon zest and 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste) and stir well to combine. Reduce the heat, and leave on the stove for another 30 seconds, allowing the spices to infuse into the butter. Remove from heat and set aside. Be careful not to over-cook the butter, as it could break.

 

 

Place the roasted cauliflower on a deep-ish serving platter. Drizzle over with the spice butter and lemon juice, and top with fresh coriander and basil. Serve immediately.

Store any leftover butter in the fridge and use to saute vegetables, for sandwiches or rice.

 

 

Stay up-to-date with Benjamin's food adventures via Instagram

 

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