This post contains affiliate links. Please read my disclosures.
I lucked out in an obscene manner at the farmers market at the weekend. It’s as if all the produce had got together and artfully arranged themselves adjacent to each other so I didn’t have to use my imagination at all. The purple cauliflower sang out immediately. Of course it would – it was purple. Purple veg are actually the best, they make everything a lot more fancy. I am absolutely addicted to purple carrots at the moment. But then carrots are complete rock stars in my eyes anyway and can do no wrong, the purple is just an added bonus.
Now what goes the bestest with cauliflower? If you said cheese then you are completely correct. My husband point blank refused to eat cauliflower at all when we first got together but once he had tried homemade cauliflower cheese suddenly it all made sense to him. In fact a lot of things can make sense with just a spoonful of cauliflower cheese, it really makes you think clearer.
The thing is with this salad is that you might not be able to get hold of bulls blood leaves but you can easily substitute it with any salad leaves. Radicchio would go very nicely. The same with the cheese, if you live in North London then I would definitely recommend sourcing from Wildes Cheese but if not, then any soft light British blue would go just as well. The pickled cauliflower is just as lovely if you can only get white cauliflower. The purple one just makes it prettier. The pickled cauliflower can be kept in the fridge for a few weeks and makes brilliant snacking if you are standing in front of the fridge at 10pm on a Tuesday night.
Pickled Purple Cauliflower
Makes about 2 x 500ml jars
2 tsp coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp yellow mustard seeds
½ tsp celery seeds
1.5 tbsp salt
400ml cider vinegar
180g caster sugar
1kg cauliflower florets
1 large onion, halved then sliced thinly
- In a large saucepan toast all the spices for a minute or so.
- Add the salt, vinegar and sugar and boil for around 10 mins.
- Add the cauliflower florets and onion and bring back up to the boil, then boil for around 3 mins.
- Remove from the heat and bottle into jars.
- Leave for a day or so for the flavours to come together.
For the salad
A large handful of salad leaves
A chunk of cheese, crumbled
A handful of walnuts, toasted in the oven then cooled
A couple of spoonfuls of pickled cauliflower
Dressed with the dressing below
1 tsp red wine vinegar
salt and pepper
2 tsp honey mustard (I used Maille’s honey dijon)
1 tbsp olive oil
Whisk the vinegar, seasoning and mustard together, then drizzle in slowly the olive oil, whisking all the while until it emulsifies into a thick dressing.