Crisp, tender, and complex, this grilled spiced cauliflower takes a fall staple and pushes it to the extremes of both flavor and texture.
Why this recipe works:
- A spice mixture gives the cauliflower an earthy flavor with just a touch of heat.
- Grilling the cauliflower over direct heat first creates a lightly charred, crispy crust.
- Finishing the cauliflower over indirect heat lets it gently cook until tender throughout.
Note: When slicing the cauliflower, be sure to cut through it vertically so that the florets on each slice are held together by a portion of the core and/or stalk—you want large pieces of cauliflower so that they don't slip down through the grill grate.
- For the Spice Mixture:
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- For the Cauliflower:
- 1 head of cauliflower, trimmed of green leaves and cut into 3/4-inch slices (see note)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems
- Type of fire: two-zone indirect
- Grill heat: medium-high
For the Spice Mixture: In a small bowl, mix together all of the ingredients.
For the Cauliflower: Brush cauliflower all over with oil and season liberally with spice mixture.
Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and arrange the coals on one side of the charcoal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Place cauliflower on hot side of grill and cook, turning, until it is charred in spots on both sides, about 3 minutes per side. Move cauliflower to cool side of the grill, cover, and continue to cook until tender throughout, 10-15 minutes longer.
Transfer cauliflower to a plate, sprinkle with cilantro, and serve.