top of page
  • Writer's pictureLydia Gerratt

Cauliflower with chorizo, olives, capers, garlic and extra virgin olive oil

Cauliflower with chorizo, olives, capers, garlic and extra virgin olive oil

For years I used to look at the cauliflowers in the supermarket, wanting to buy (particularly when they are sometimes as little as £1 in season), but I didn't know any good recipes apart from cauliflower cheese.

Then one year I was listening to the Food Programme on Radio 4 and they devoted it to cooking cauliflower - I was inspired to try something different. I couldn't quite remember the recipe that was cooked, but I do remember the chef saying how cauliflower can take strong flavours and he had added lots of capers to his dish.

At the time I was the Waitrose Ingredients Buyer and I was living in a world of olives…..I was on a mission to create the best assortment of olives my customers could buy. I was bringing home jars and cans of olives everyday to test, taste and cook and I thought the addition of some strong flavoured pitted black olives to the cauliflower and capers would go down a treat. And, while I was at it, maybe a good handful of chorizo (olives, capers and chorizo are all part of the Spanish ingredient family after all) and a load of garlic wouldn’t go amiss.

You wouldn't think that mild, creamy tasting cauliflower would work so well with all these powerful flavours but it does and is so incredibly more-ish!

I finish off by using lots of extra virgin olive oil to dress the cauliflower. Now is the time to break out that super special expensive bottle of olive oil that someone gave you or the one you picked up from an organic rustic farm on holiday and use it liberally all over the cauliflower. As the olive oil isn’t cooked, the grassy, olive-y flavours stay intact and ramp up the taste yet further of this very fabulous dish.

Miraculous ingredients: Unearthered Chorizo de Leon, non pareilles capers in brine, Kalamata black olives, extra virgin olive oil

Cauliflower with chorizo, olives, capers, garlic and extra virgin olive oil


1 whole cauliflower 10cm piece of chorizo salami (Unearthered Chorizo de Leon is very good), thinly sliced 40g of nonpareilles capers in brine, drained 80g of pitted Kalamata black olives, chopped

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (add as much or as little for your taste)

coarse sea salt


Prepare the cauliflower by removing all the green outer leaves and breaking the white florets into quite small bite size pieces. Boil the cauliflower in a large pan of salted water for just 5 minutes. The little florets should be just soft, if they are too over done then the cauliflower will turn to mush when you mix in the other ingredients. Drain well and keep the cauliflower warm in the cooking pot with the lid on.

Place a dry medium size frying pan on a medium heat to warm while you get the other ingredients ready for cooking. Skin and thinly slice the Chorizo sausage.

Put the sliced chorizo into the hot frying pan. Do not add any additional oil as the chorizo will release a lot of its own oil. Fry for 3 to 4 minutes. The slices of chorizo will shrink and brown slightly. Add the finely sliced garlic, capers and the chopped Kalamata olives and fry for another 2 minutes. Take off the heat.

Add the cooked cauliflower to the chorizo, garlic, capers and olives and gently mix. Add some extra virgin olive oil and sea salt to your taste.

I like to serve with lots of crusty white bread to help scoop up the orange coloured oil from the chorizo and bits of garlic and capers at the bottom of the dish.

Preparation time 15 minutes, cooking 15 minutes, serves 4

bottom of page