Fregola salad with roast spiced cauliflower, saffron, dates and olives

Serves 4
40 minutes


Cauliflower pasta salad

  • 1 cauliflower, broken into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 tbsp of boiling water
  • 1 pinch of saffron
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 150g of fregola, or giant couscous
  • 1/2 lemon, juice only
  • 3 tbsp of flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped, plus extra to garnish
  • 4 Medjool dates, stoned and finely chopped
  • 70g of green olives, preferably Crespo pitted green olives with herbs and garlic
  • 3 tbsp of olive oil
  • salt
  • black pepper


Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6
Mix the saffron with the boiling water in a large bowl. Toss with the cauliflower, 1 tbsp of the olive oil, the smoked paprika and a generous amount of salt and pepper. Add the onion and mix again
Spread the cauliflower and onion out on a large baking tray and roast for 25–30 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden and slightly crispy around the edges
Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cook the fregola or giant couscous in the boiling water according to the packet instructions (for around 7 minutes) until just al dente. When ready, drain and set aside
When the cauliflower is cooked add the fregola, lemon juice, parsley, dates and olives to the roasting tray and mix well to combine. Drizzle over the remaining olive oil and mix well
To serve, divide the pasta salad between bowls and garnish with the extra chopped parsley. Serve immediately, or chill and eat cold – this makes good packed lunches