Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter & riberries

Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter & riberries

Winter is so much more comfortable somewhere indoors, near a source of heat with a hot drink in hand. I struggle to find anything fun about being outside in the streets with numb extremities, and something tells me I’m not alone.

I woke up with a plan, on this particular 7°C Saturday morning. A certain vegetable was on my mind. I walked to Eveleigh Market hoping to find this rather elusive vegetable that has a fairly short season.

Wilson Street in fog, Newtown

Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter, pomegranate and riberries recipe

And there they were! Not only did I spot a crate full of gorgeous Romanesco cauli’s at one stall, but two others were selling them. Talk about a bounty! First dibs went to the guys from J & R Muscat, a small family-owned vegetable farm in the northwest of Sydney; friendly and helpful with a great selection of fresh and colourful produce.

Eveleigh Market, Sydney

I was keeping this recipe simple, so nothing else was needed at the markets. I took a short-cut home past McDonaldtown Station where I discovered a row of riberry trees that were full of fruit; immediately factoring the bright pink native Australian fruit into my recipe. I mean, how could I walk straight on past fresh riberries without picking some?

There was already a pomegranate at home, plus a good hunk of harissa butter in the fridge, and everything else is stock pantry stuff. Chilli-phobes may panic at the thought of harissa, but the butter I’ve made doesn’t actually contain a great deal of it. There’s a slight tingle, but nothing that’d make you lunge for a kleenex.

Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter, pomegranate and riberries recipe

From start to finish, this dish couldn’t take more than 30 minutes, providing the harissa butter is pre-made and ready to go. Toast the almonds, fry the capers, steam the cauli’s, brown the butter and it’s pretty much done after a final flourish of garnishes.


Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter, pomegranate and riberries recipe


Print Recipe
Romanesco cauliflower with harissa butter & riberries
This romanesco cauliflower dish is sure to brighten up the dining table!
Romanesco cauliflower recipe
Course Vegetables
Course Vegetables
Romanesco cauliflower recipe
  1. Steam the cauliflower for 5 minutes, or longer if they are larger in size.
  2. Meanwhile, melt the harissa butter in a small pan over medium heat. Allow to bubble and cook for a minute, or so, until golden. Remove from heat and set aside. Skim off and discard any milk solids that float to the top. This isn't necessary, but it does look nicer with the clarified butter over the cauli's.
  3. To assemble, lay the steamed cauliflower on a plate, drizzle over the harissa butter and scatter over the fried capers, almonds, pomegranate and riberries. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper over the top.
Recipe Notes

Get my recipe for Harissa Butter here.

* If your capers are in salt, rinse under water, drain and dry well. If they are in brine, just drain and dry well. Pour some olive oil into a small pan until 1 cm deep. Heat over medium flame and carefully scatter in the capers, allowing to fry for about 30 seconds, or until light-golden and crisp. Remove from the oil and drain on kitchen towels until cool. Keep the olive oil for dressings or cooking.


Share this Recipe
  • itchbay

    Absolutely beautiful.

  • This is gorgeous. I have never seen romesco cauliflower before but will definitely be on the lookout now at Melbourne markets! Love the middle-eastern flavours of harissa, pomegranate and almonds that you have used here too.

    • Thanks Claudia, I expect you’ll find it somewhere at the Melbourne markets. I really hope you do!

  • Beautiful vegetable, beautiful dish

  • Gorgeous dish – and the photos! Ahhh… Sorry about the cold. I’d trade you a little for some of our heat, if I could…

  • AmandaChewTown

    I do wish I found romescos more readily available – we don’t tend to have them at our local market. I’m loving the simplicity of this dish, while still having the “he needs food” signature twists.

  • Romanescos must be the prettiest vegetable around! Love the foraging aspect you’d added to this dish too.

  • Stunning plate. I can’t stop staring at it.
    I have no idea what riberries are, but I’m looking them up right now.
    Just subscribed to you – found you on tasteofbeirut. Cheers!

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  • Sara (Belly Rumbles)

    I know you have a green thumb. Ever thought of having a go at growing them?

    • Last season I did give it a try, Sara. Bought the seedlings, they grew half a metre tall and flowered some spears that looks a lot like broccolini. Either the seedling were incorrectly labelled or something went terribly wrong. Still, they made it to the plate!

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