Fall/ Recipe/ Summer/ Vegetarian

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks with Lemon, Herbs & Toasted Almonds

So I’ve been hiding from you on the side of a mountain these past 3 months. And I mean that in the best possible way.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks Recipe - Cauliflower Piccata | SheEats.ca
The cookbook is now written, photographed and it’s in the hands of my fabulous Editor. And since finishing the manuscript, I’ve been in something of a food photography and writing coma. I’ve been in blog hibernation, if you will.

So it really isn’t you I’ve been hiding from, but rather my laptop. And the internet. And anything to do with recipes and cooking and hashtags.

Instead, I’ve basked in the silence of mountain sunshine, fresh air, mud, muck and ground ferns. And I’ve been pretty much happy as a pig in shit.

Except for when I’m terrified.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks Ingredients - Cauliflower Piccata | SheEats.ca
As it turns out, there’s a butt load of things to be afraid of in the wilderness: Bears. Cougars. Sheer-faced rock cliffs. Rolling off sheer-faced rock cliffs. Figuring out how I’m going to haul this case of beer up the side of that mountain.


I’m constantly on the look out for animals hungry that want to eat me and insects buzzing to sting me. I have to stop regularly to make sure I’m following the right trail markers lest I get lost or worse yet, trip on a slippery root section and tumble off the edge of the mountain; I have zero sense of direction and my body-spacial-awareness is lackadaisical at best. Oh yeah, and the beer. Or lack thereof.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks Recipe - Head of Cauliflower | SheEats.ca
But spending the past few weeks trudging up and down various trails has lit a fire somethin’ fierce, in my belly. And sometimes in my boots (make sure you wear proper footwear!)

I have this incessant craving I just can’t satiate.

For the outdoors. For the kindness and generosity of the people on the trails. For the adventure to be had.

I can’t stop myself. I find I’m dreaming of hikes yet to be discovered and then waking up in the middle of the night, hungry for the next big trek. The idea of not being on the mountain is almost painful. Like I’m missing something integral to my very being.

It’s like I was born to be wild.

Or at the very least, in the wild.

And I’ve been chasing that obsession all damn Summer long.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks Recipe - Cauliflower Piccata | SheEats.ca
Of course, my new found passion for lugging my body up climbing chains and perilously thin ladders deep in the middle of nowhere doesn’t mean I don’t love this still.

Or you.



In fact, the distance has made my heart grow fonder. Like any good relationship, spending time apart has allowed me to see how important what we have is.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks Recipe - Cauliflower Piccata | SheEats.ca
Sometimes we just need to turn off the computer, put on our big girl pants, and schlep through some mud bogs to reconnect with ourselves. And each other.

And while I am so very much in love with the wild, I am also so very much in love with you. While I’ve found refuge in the wilderness, I think it’s time we reconnect with each other.

And so here I am. A hungry woman, humbled by the greatness of the West coast (and the beating the Wilderness has given me), with the most humble of vegetables in my hands: The cauliflower.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks | Cauliflower Piccata - SheEats.ca
This isn’t the ideal meal if you’re planning a huge hike tomorrow morning. As that poor vegan woman who tried to climb Everest found out, protein is kind of super important for that kind of physical and mental exertion. Animal-based or otherwise.

But if you’re having a lovely (or lazy) night in or want something to go on the side of your Black Bean Veggie Burgers, Balsamic Slow Braised Short Ribs, Chorizo in red wine with herbs or Spanish Croquettes, this is the dish for you.

Spiced with cumin & coriander, heaps of fresh lemon & herbs and topped off with toasted almonds, this Spiced Cauliflower Steaks recipe is simple – but oh so ridiculously delicious and flavourful – enough to make it into my weekly rotation. Basically, they feel fancy but are totally quick and easy.

Like me.

And now I hope this recipe makes it into your weekly rotation, too. Because you will love love love it!

Welcome back friends. I’ve missed you.

Now. Who’s hungry??

P.S. If you want to catch up with my wilderness treks or see what I’m cooking live way more often, follow me on Instagram or Snapchat (πŸ‘» kristy_gardner). I hang out over there a lot.

Spiced Cauliflower Steaks with Lemon, Fresh Herbs & Toasted Almonds




Toasting the almonds enhances their flavour immensely - be sure not to skip this important step.


  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp chili flakes
  • Coarse sea salt + fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 C blanched slivered almonds
  • 1/4 C fresh grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbsp flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • Optional: Serve with a Tbsp of Chimichurri Sauce for each cauliflower steak


  1. Pre-heat your oven to 450 degrees F.
  2. In a mortar and pestle, bash the cumin seeds, coriander seeds, chili flakes and a generous helping of salt and pepper together until fragrant. Set aside.
  3. Place the cauliflower on a cutting board so the head of the cauliflower faces up. Cut it in half from top to bottom. Then cut those two halves, the exact same way into 1" thick "steaks". Keeping the core is intact, you should end up with 2-4 cauliflower steaks (depending on the size of your cauliflower) and a bunch of florets. Break up the florets into 1" pieces.
  4. Place the cauliflower on the baking sheet. Sprinkle the bashed seed mixture on top and drizzle generously with olive oil. Squeeze the lemon juice and sprinkle the zest all over the tops of the cauliflower. Mix well to combine and ensure even coating on all sides.
  5. Place in the oven and roast for 20 minutes or until the cauliflower gets nice and browned on the bottom. Carefully flip and cook a further 10-15 minutes.
  6. As the cauliflower cooks, place the slivered almonds in a non-stick pan over medium-low heat with a pinch of salt. Shaking often, toast the almonds until fragrant and golden, approx. 10 minutes. Watch them carefully so they don't burn. Remove from the heat and store in the fridge in a glass container for up to 2 weeks.
  7. When ready to serve, plate the cauliflower individually or as part of a larger platter and sprinkle generously with the almonds, grated Parmesan cheese and flat leaf parsley. If using, brush each plate with a heaping Tbsp of Chimichurri Sauce before serving, or dish up family style by putting the whole bowl on the table. Enjoy!


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If you’re into really good food cooked from scratch with fresh ingredients, drinks with a little somethin’ somethin’ and enjoying what you put in your mouth, this book is for you.


Julia Child famously commented, "I enjoy cooking with wine, sometimes I even put it in the food . . . ” Kristy Gardner has taken this idea to the next level in Cooking with Cocktails. Every recipe is touched with alcohol; the result is a punchy visual adventure with roots in Italian and French cuisine that demands enjoying meals with passion, with friends, and with alcohol.


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  • Liliana
    August 2, 2016 at 5:46 PM

    This recipe sounds delicious and looks amazing. My husband and I decided to eat less meat and load up on veggies, so this would be one recipe to add to my weekly menu plan.

    Congrats on the cookbook! The cover looks beautiful.

  • Teresa
    August 2, 2016 at 6:31 PM

    That’s a great combination of flavours! Roasted cauliflower is one of my favourite things to eat, whether I’m having vegan, vegetarian or meaty meals.

    The Everest comment reminded me that I’ve got to keep an eye out for the film Sherpa – it’s supposed to be very good, but devastating to watch.

    Congrats on the beautiful book cover and happy that your blog break is taking you out in the wild. It’s the best place to be in summer.
    Teresa recently published…Honey Dijon Lamb MeatballsMy Profile

  • Becky
    August 3, 2016 at 5:45 AM

    Roasted anything is awesome. As is being outside this time of year, without screens. Can’t wait to get my hands on the book.
    Becky recently published…Stovetop Granola is totally a thing.My Profile

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets
    August 6, 2016 at 5:33 AM

    Welcome back my friend! It’s good to see (read) you. Also, you came with cauliflower: one of my favorite veggies. Yes it’s true, I say that about most veggies but with cauliflower I really mean it. Asparagus too. Oh and we can’t forget broccoli or potatoes, although those last ones are a root vegetable and therefore in their own category. Hmm, I think I’m rambling. What I mean to say is it’s good to have you back and blogging.

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 23, 2016 at 8:21 AM

      Thanks buddy – it’s good to be back!

      I won’t lie – I’m not the biggest broccoli fan. But I do like it roasted. That’s about it. But I’ll take potatoes ANY day!

      I’ll always bring the cauliflower. That’s how much I love you. And it πŸ˜‰
      Kristy Gardner recently published…#MargaritaWeek: Mint Cucumber & Smoky Jalapeno MargaritaMy Profile

  • Marisa
    August 9, 2016 at 1:47 PM

    The humbled cauliflower looks humble no more! Beautifully photographed and looks so delicious! Congratulations on the cookbook Kristy!

  • Justine @ JustineCelina.com
    August 9, 2016 at 2:18 PM

    It’s great hear from you, Kristy! I totally agree that sometimes it’s necessary to just shut the world out and get outside to reconnect with yourself. That’s actually something I’ve been doing a lot of this summer myself. I appreciated the book update as well — I can’t wait to see it in print! And these cauliflower steaks sound divine. Perfect for a late summer side dish, as you mention. I’m just pinned the recipe — thanks for the inspiration!
    Justine @ JustineCelina.com recently published…AL FRESCO SUMMER DINING INSPIRATIONMy Profile

    • Kristy Gardner
      August 23, 2016 at 8:24 AM

      I’m so happy to hear you’re enjoying the Summer Justine. It’s been so beautiful – hot sunny days. Bring it on!! (that being said, I checked out a lot of crunchy leaves on Kits beach last night….. Craaaaaazy already).
      Kristy Gardner recently published…Argentinian “Pesto”: Chimichurri SauceMy Profile

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