A co-worker of mine was struggling to come up with a vegetarian, gluten-free dinner for her book club the following night. I immediately perked up, my eager facial expression saying, “Ooh, I can help! Please let me help!”
There is so much joy and nourishment in cooking good food for people.
So, I started asking questions about her goals, ability, and of course, her taste in food.
Immediately, I knew the dish: Roasted Cauliflower with Chickpeas & Olives.
It’s a delightfully savory dish, well rounded with the tangy, briny bite of green olives and nuttiness of roasted cauliflower. The roasted chickpeas are transformed into luscious pillow-y bites. Just a touch of red pepper flakes provides some heat while finishing with fresh parsley really brings the dish together in a truly palate-pleasing way.
To accompany this main dish, I suggested a simple salad that’s easy to throw together but refined in its flavors. Both recipes are posted below for your cooking, hosting, and dining enjoyment!
Roasted Cauliflower, Chickpeas, & Green Olives
Makes 4 servings
|5 ½ cups cauliflower florets||3 T. olive oil|
|24 green, Spanish olives, pitted & halved||¼ tsp. sea salt|
|8 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped||½ tsp. crushed red pepper|
|1 can chickpeas, rinsed & drained||3 T. fresh parsley, chopped|
- Preheat oven to 450°.
- Combine 1st four ingredients in a roasting pan or large glass baking dish.
- Drizzle with olive oil, pepper, & salt. Toss well to coat.
- Roast for 22 minutes, stirring after 10 minutes.
- Cauliflower should brown & tender, but crisp. Sprinkle with parsley & serve.
**Add rotisserie chicken or salmon on top
Spinach Asparagus Salad with Dates & Shaved Parmesan
Makes 5 servings
|5 cups spinach||1 bunch asparagus|
|5 T. Shaved Parmesan — just eyeball it||10 dried dates, pitted & chopped|
|5 T. Mustard Vinaigrette (recipe below)||Sea salt & Pepper|
- Slice the asperagus into 1-inch strips & sauté them for a few minutes until tender, but crisp
- In each individual salad bowl place:
1 cup spinach
1/5 of the sautéed asparagus
2 chopped dates
1 T. shaved Parmesan
1 T. mustard vinaigrette
sea salt & pepper to finish if desired
|1 T. stone ground mustard||1 lemon juiced|
|¼ cup extra virgin olive oil||½ – 1 tsp. sea salt|
|1 T. raw honey or agave||½ tsp. black pepper|
- Add all ingredients in a glass jar or vessel with a tight fitting lid.
- Shake vigorously to combine ingredients.
- Taste and adjust to desired palate.
- Should be pretty strong so you don’t need much. If it’s too strong add some honey/agave and/or olive oil.
Creating delicious, healthy meals year round doesn’t need to be an arduous process — nor does it need to contain heavy, unhealthy ingredients to be satisfying to the soul.
Try these recipes this fall for a warm and satisfying meal with friends!