Whole roasted cauliflower with red wine, shallots & wheatberries

Whole roasted cauliflower with red wine, shallots & wheatberries

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(4 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 1 hr, 15 mins


Serves 4

For vegetarians, cauliflower is veg patch royalty. This dish captures all that is right about the marriage of grains and vegetables 

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy
  • Vegetarian

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal603
  • fat18g
  • saturates4g
  • carbs74g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre9g
  • protein25g
  • salt1g
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  • 1 large head of cauliflower, outer leaves removed



    A brassica, like cabbage and broccoli, cauliflower is a mass of tiny, tightly packed flower…

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
    olive oil

    Olive oil

    ol-iv oyl

    Probably the most widely-used oil in cooking, olive oil is pressed from fresh olives. It's…

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 3 large banana shallots, quartered
  • 4 Portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tsp thyme leaves


    This popular herb grows in Europe, especially the Mediterranean, and is a member of the mint…

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 150ml red wine
  • 100g young leaf spinach
  • 350g wheatberries
  • 1l hot vegetable stock
  • 50g hazelnuts (skin on), roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp crushed pink peppercorns
  • 50g vegetarian parmesan, finely grated



    Parmesan is a straw-coloured hard cheese with a natural yellow rind and rich, fruity flavour. It…


  1. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Sit the cauliflower head upside down on a chopping board and cut the tough stem away. Leave some of the base so that the cauliflower remains intact.

  2. Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole dish on a low-medium heat. Add the mustard seeds and, once they begin to ‘pop’, add the shallots. Fry gently for 4-5 mins until starting to caramelise, then add the mushrooms, thyme and garlic, and cook for a further 4-5 mins, stirring every so often. Pour in the wine and reduce by half. Stir in the spinach and allow the leaves to wilt.

  3. Next, add the wheatberries, season well and combine. Make a well in the centre and put the cauliflower in the middle. Pour the stock around – not over – the caulifower, then season.

  4. Cover and transfer to the oven. Cook for 50 mins-1 hr until the cauliflower and wheatberries are tender. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the hazelnuts, peppercorns and Parmesan over the cauliflower. Return to the oven for a further 5 mins, then serve.

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Comments, questions and tips

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1st Apr, 2018
Though this dish had me worried halfway through, it turned into a great success! I changed the shallots for onions and wheatberries for peal barley. On checking it after at 50 mins the cauliflower still seemed pretty solid and the top layer of barley had toasted rather than cooked. Nightmare, I thought!! I moved the whole thing into a larger baking tray, added more stock and brushed the cauli with olive oil. Another 45 mins in the oven and it was ready! I took this to an Easter supper where it was eaten alongside roast lamb and other veg sides. Friends liked how unusual it was and the parmesan made it akin to cauliflower cheese but with a yummy barley surrounding it. My advice: give yourselves time for this one but keep at it as the result is delicious!!
28th Jan, 2018
Very nice - was fed up with pastry overload on the vegetarian front for roast dinner mains. Substituted sherry for wine and added chestnuts to the stew mix (no hazlenuts) used a mix of wheatberries and other stuff (from supermarket) halved the mushrooms. Loved it .
3rd May, 2017
This recipe is great, no idea what the commenter below is talking about. The cauliflower was cooked through after 50 minutes, and the red wine and stock flavoured the barley (substituted for wheat berries because I couldn't find any at my local supermarket) beautifully. Made it for my housemate and myself, and we both loved it.
5th Mar, 2017
This is the worst recipe of all time. If you would like some RAW cauliflower with beautiful portobello mushrooms water boarded in red wine, this is the dish for you and your most hated ones. Perfect for a break up supper or satan. I wish I could give this minus stars. Grim.
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