Prep Time 10′
Total Time 20′
The cauliflower steak has been the subject of some controversy over the years. When it became popular a few years back, a few enterprising restaurants and shops decided to capitalise on the trend, selling ‘gourmet’ cauliflower steaks for extortionate prices.
One memorable moment involved a British pub which was offering two cauliflower steaks for £28, the same price as their Aberdeen Angus steaks.(1)
Needless to say, vegans, vegetarians and meat-eaters alike flocked to social media to mock the odd menu choice, and it was swiftly removed.
So, yes: the cauliflower steak has seen its fair share of scandal over the years. However, it’s almost always a reaction to extortionate pricing; in fact, one of the best things about this dish is that it is incredibly cheap to make.
Perhaps the pub in question had momentarily forgotten that a standard cauliflower from the supermarket will set you back around 80p; an organic cauliflower comes in at between £1.50 and £2.
To us, this is just another reason to make this delicious dish at home!
Cauliflower acts as a great big sponge for flavour. This is why it’s so good as a main dish; you can flavour it with just about anything and it’ll soak right through to the core of the vegetable.
We love making whole roasted cauliflower with Persian spices, or slathering it in an aromatic Indian spice paste.
Here, we’ve gone for rather simpler flavours, handing the bulk of the work over to our chimichurri sauce. When it comes to the cauliflower steaks themselves, however, seasoning is key.
We love the smoky sweetness of paprika, which complements chimichurri perfectly. After all, in Argentina chimichurri is the traditional accompaniment to grilled meats, sizzled until charred on the parilla. It is quite literally made to pair with smokiness.
Meanwhile, tamari sauce provides savoury depth. You could substitute soy sauce in, if you’re OK with gluten.
As mentioned above, chimichurri comes from Argentina. It's also commonly found in the cuisines of Paraguay and Uruguay.
In Argentina, the asado is a big part of the culture. Simply translated, it means ‘barbecue’, but it has rather more cultural resonance than our version (and less time spent hiding indoors from unexpected rain).
An asado is usually held as a celebration, and usually showcases lots of different types of meat. Argentinian beef is famous for its quality, and very little else is needed with the meal beyond some good red wine, salad and a little chimichurri to go alongside.
While not all of us are open to the meat element of the asado, we can still enjoy the flavours of chimichurri.
We’ve followed quite a traditional recipe here, apart from the hemp seed oil, which we think is a worthy addition!
Chimichurri is even better if you are able to leave the flavours to infuse. The twenty minutes during which the cauliflower is in the oven will suffice, but if you are able to start a bit earlier and leave it longer, so much the better.
While hemp seed oil isn’t a traditional ingredient in chimichurri, we think there’s good reason to add it.
Our Organic Hemp Seed Oil contains health-boosting nutrients which can be tricky to find elsewhere in the plant world. For example, it’s a source of dietary vitamin D, making it a good alternative to the usual vegan source of mushrooms.
It also contains omega-3 and omega-6, and even better, they’re present in the perfect ratio of 1:3. Omega-3 plays an important role in your nervous system, blood pressure and inflammatory response.(2) It also seems to protect your heart health.(3)
It has a pleasant, nutty flavour which brings its own charm to our cauliflower steaks, along with its numerous health benefits.
For the cauliflower steaks:
For the chimichurri:
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