My latest kitchen gadget is a Ninja food processor. As Spring is here it is time to try and switch from the comfort food of winter and eat lighter and fresher. The Ninja is an excellent blender and has given us some great smoothies. We had an excellent food processor with a blender until we moved house. I lost the motor and, despite six months of expecting to stumble across it, it remains missing to this day. The Ninja is now my blender, chopper, and dough mixer.
There was a small leaflet which came with it which included a range of recipes to try with the device. One of them was for cauliflower cous cous. It’s one of those ‘faux foods’ which replaces earthy version with a not-quite-the-same but healthier version. Zucchini noodles or zoodles are a regular substitute for pasta for example.
This is a combination of last year’s trendy roast cauliflower with the ever-popular cous cous. I used one small cauliflower to make enough for the main side dish for three of us. The cauliflower florets are pulsed in the food processor until there are lots of little cous cous sized pieces. I then toss them in olive oil in a bowl and add a little seasoning before spreading them out on a baking tray and cooking them for about eight minutes on a baking tray in an oven at 180 degrees. You need to keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t burn and to turn them over a little to get a slight but even colour. The flavour gets a little nuttier in this process too.
For some flavouring I added a handful of rocket leaves chopped roughly, some coriander chopped finely, five spring onions sliced thinly and then two medium diced tomatoes with seeds removed. I added a good swirl of basil oil and a good squeeze of lemon as well as plenty of salt and pepper. I added this to the cauliflower mixture at the last minute.
The result was fabulous. In my opinion a good substitute for cous cous but lighter, slightly more flavoursome and without the risk of sticking together. I served a couple of spare ribs with it and we all agreed it would make a really nice barbecue side dish in the summer.