Chickpea and cauliflower stew

January 22, 2020
Family Verdict:


  • ½ onion
  • 350g cauliflower
  • olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
  • ½ blunch flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 clove garlic
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 25g black olives (ileft these out as I didn't have any)
  • 15g raisins
  • 1 400g tin plum tomatoes
  • 1 400g tin chickpeas
  • 150g  couscous

  1. Peel and roughly chop the onion. Trim off any leaves and the dry end from the cauliflower stalk, then finely slice the remaining stalk and chop the head into small florets.
  2. Heat ½ a tablespoon of oil in a medium saucepan over a medium-low heat, then add the onion and cauliflower along with the chilli flakes and a pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
  3. Cover with a lid and cook for 15 minutes, or until the cauliflower has softened, stirring regularly and adding a splash of water, if needed. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  4. Meanwhile, pick the parsley, finely chopping the leaves and stalks, then peel and finely chop the garlic.
  5. Heat ½ a tablespoon of oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat, then add the parsley stalks, garlic and cinnamon, then cook for 1 minute, or until lightly golden.
  6. Bash the olives and tear out the stones if needed, then add the olives and raisins to the garlic pan and cook for 1 further minute, or until golden.
  7. Tip in the tomatoes along with half a tin’s worth of water, breaking the tomatoes up with a spoon as you go. Drain and add the chickpeas, season, then let it bubble away for 15 minutes, or until thickened.
  8. Meanwhile, fill a small pan with water and bring to the boil.
  9. Place the couscous into a bowl, pour over 220ml of the boiling water, then cover with a plate and set aside for 5 to 10 minutes, or until absorbed.
  10. Stir the cauliflower mixture into the tomato and chickpea stew, then season to taste.
  11. Fluff up the couscous with a fork and divide between your plates. Spoon over the stew, then scatter with the chopped parsley.


What an unpromising title - first a stew, then featuring 2 ingredients that can be pretty beige and boring, and guess what served with cous-cous - altogether a taste free zone of pappy textures you can eat without teeth.

The reality is different, given some flavour with Moroccan influenced spicing (chilli, cinnamon, raisins - yes I know thats not a spice) and leaving some texture in the cauliflower to give at least some mouth feel. It is a meal that is undoubtedly good for you and is an experiment in my veggie exploration. It is actually a Jaime. It is worth doing once if you happen to have a cauliflower. I am not sure if I will repeat it or not, as the youngest didn't really enjoy it, even if i did.

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