This Curry Roasted Cauliflower is a delicious and healthy side dish that is certain to liven up almost any fall meal. The flavor of roasted cauliflower paired with the warm curry spices makes it especially perfect for a chilly fall or winter supper. And let me tell you, this tasty dish may even entice the picky eaters and cauliflower-haters of your family to eat their veggies (here’s looking at you, hubby!)
Now, of course, you can buy cauliflower at the supermarket at any time of the year, but its peak season and the time it is truly at its best is fall. And even though fall is just really getting started here in the mountains, I was able to pick up a giant, beautiful head of locally-grown cauliflower this past weekend at the local farmer’s market. I didn’t really have a plan for it when I bought it (it was just too pretty to resist), but I soon landed on the idea of roasting the cauliflower and spicing it up with a hit of curry powder to make it extra warm and flavorful. And I wasn’t wrong – it turned out totally delicious! This Curry Roasted Cauliflower would be fantastic as an accompaniment to a grilled or roasted chicken or paired with potatoes and peas for a vegetarian meal.
So let’s talk about ingredients.
Cauliflower. I feel like fresh is best in this recipe because it’s hard to get the brown, roasty bits from frozen cauliflower. A large head of cauliflower from your grocery store, farmers’ market, or from your garden works best. You can even make this recipe extra-easy by buying a bag or two of pre-cut florets. If you want to use frozen cauliflower, thaw it first and drain off any water.
What is curry powder? Curry powder as we know it here in the U.S. is just a generic term for a blend of spices that are used in Indian cooking. The typical store-bought curry powder is what I use in this recipe. It’s probably not authentic in any way, but is still delicious and contains spices, like turmeric, that is known to have some health benefits. You can also make your own curry powder.
Why do I need to add brown sugar? The answer to this question is that you don’t actually need to add it. Sugar in this recipe is a completely optional ingredient. I like to add just a small amount of it to boost the sweetness of the cauliflower and to make the dish more palatable to the picky eaters in my house. If you don’t want the additional sweetness, leave it out.
- I find I get the best results when using a dark pan to roast the cauliflower, giving it a nice golden brown color. You can also use a large cast-iron skillet for roasting. If you decide to use a glass baking dish or a light-colored sheet pan, it will still be delicious, but don’t expect as much browned color to your cauliflower. Also, be sure to use a pan large enough that the florets aren’t too crowded.
- When the cauliflower is finished roasting, taste and season with a little more salt. Be a little generous – the salt really enhances the curry flavor. (Naturally, if you have health reasons for avoiding salt, please follow the doctor’s orders.)
- I prefer the flavor of the curry without the addition of black pepper. If you feel like it needs a little pepper, feel free to add it either before roasting or after.
- Finish by adding a couple of squeezes of lemon juice over the roasted cauliflower. Don’t be tempted to skip this part – the acidity brightens the flavors and makes them sing!
So if you are looking for a flavorful fall side dish, I hope you try this recipe. Please let me know how you liked it in the comments below.
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