Cauliflower flan

Thanksgiving caught me off guard this year, I guess geographical location has something to do with it (duh!); feeling a tinge of guilt I decided to partake with one of the recipes in my upcoming mini-Iraqi cookbook. 

This is real easy to make, provided you have either a charlotte pan or a round pan with high edges (at least 4 inches tall). Briefly steam the cauliflower florets, assemble the flan in minutes in a food processor and bake it; perfect to make ahead and present on Thanksgiving Day as your side dish contribution.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

INGREDIENTS: 6 servings

Pan used is a charlotte pan, 4″ deep and 7″ wide

• 6 cups of cauliflower florets 

• 3 eggs

• 3/4 cup of breadcrumbs or 3/4 cup of corn flakes unsweetened

• 1 cup of milk or light cream

• salt, white pepper

• 1/4 tsp of nutmeg

• 1 tsp of cumin

• 1/2 tsp of paprika 

• 3/4 cup of grated Swiss cheese (or any yellow cheese)

• 1 small onion, chopped (1/2 cup)

• 2 tbsp of butter (or oil)



1. Break up the cauliflower florets from the cauliflower;  boil (or steam) for about 5 minutes  in salted boiling water until tender but still firm. Drain and set aside. Cool for 15 minutes, then take half the florets and mash or puree in a food processor or a food mill.  
2. Grease a charlotte or deep cake mold (with sides at least 4″  high) and line the remaining cauliflower florets in the bottom of the mold making sure to cover the entire bottom surface so that no gap is visible. Melt the  butter in a skillet and fry the onion over medium-low heat for ten minutes until translucent and golden. Transfer the onion to the mashed cauliflower florets in the food processor bowl. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C).
3. Add the eggs to the cauliflower and onion mixture; add the cream or milk, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, grated nutmeg and cumin and paprika and cheese; process for a few seconds till the mixture is rather smooth and all the elements are well-mixed. 
4. Gently pour the cauliflower custard mixture over the layer of florets into the pan. Bake for 25 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes. Invert the pan onto a serving platter and serve immediately. 

Related Posts with Thumbnails
Print This Post Print This Post


  1. Posted November 20, 2012 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    What a great idea¨This flan is beautiful.



  2. Posted November 20, 2012 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    This will be on my table tonight. I adore chou-fleur and look forward to following your lead…but as I suspect you would do yourself, I am already imagining all kinds of ways to build on the beautiful canvass you’ve you laid out for me. I’ll report back for sure! :)

  3. Posted November 20, 2012 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    That sounds delicious! I like cauliflower a lot and often make a cream of cauliflower soup. I’ll try this flan. My trainees from Algeria or Dubai, can’t remember which country, used to make a fried cauliflower then serve it with a sauce and it was very tasty, you may know the recipe?

  4. Joumana
    Posted November 20, 2012 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

    @vagabonde: this dish you are referring to is most likely Lebanese and is called arnabeet wtarator; I posted it a couple of times on the blog
    each one uses the same sauce, but the first one you don’t fry the cauliflower, the second you do, the third you roast them

    @Marc: Looking forward to the update!

    @Banana wonder: it is coming out in 3 months (I think) but initially it is going to be in Arabic

  5. Posted November 20, 2012 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    What a beautiful dish, Joumana! I love cauliflower and I am adding this to my To Try list! I think I’ll have to buy a charlotte pan now ;)

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

  6. Posted November 20, 2012 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    Love this way of serving cauliflower! It’s so beautiful.

  7. Posted November 20, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    Best T-Day dish ever! I tried to make something like this a few weeks ago but didn’t come out to the best finish – I am trying it again with your recipe. Looks so beautiful! Cool about the cookbook, too! When is it coming out?

  8. Posted November 21, 2012 at 12:16 am | Permalink

    Il a l’air délicieux. UNe bonne idée pour utiliser ce légumes qui est en ce moment sur tous les étals.

  9. Posted November 21, 2012 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Mindblowing flan, incredibly tempting.

  10. Posted November 21, 2012 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    I love this! Pinning!

  11. Posted November 21, 2012 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    j’ai déjà mangé des gratins de choux-fleurs mais jamais de cette façon.
    Il est magnifique. Bravo!!
    J’espère que ton livre sera traduit en français, sinon pas grave, je me remettrai à l’arabe.
    A bientôt

  12. Posted November 21, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

    I love how the finished dish looks like a head of cauliflower! Can’t wait to try it.

  13. Posted November 21, 2012 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    oh my word…does this look delicious !

  14. Posted November 23, 2012 at 2:22 am | Permalink

    Belated Happy Thanksgiving back to you!

  15. Kathy D.
    Posted November 26, 2012 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    Where is the cheese in the instructions?

  16. Joumana
    Posted November 27, 2012 at 12:41 am | Permalink

    @Kathy: You add the cheese along with the spices and egg; sorry I missed it and thanks for pointing it out! :)

  17. Posted November 27, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    I don’t think I have ever seen a cooler recipe that takes on a cauliflwoer. You rock!

    chow! Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  18. Posted December 12, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Un peu comme un gâteau…

  19. Joelle
    Posted April 7, 2013 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    This turned out yummi. I served it to my one year old twins and they loved it. I will try it with broccoli too soon. Thank you for sharing!

  20. Joumana
    Posted April 7, 2013 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    @Joelle: so glad to hear this! :)

2 Trackbacks

  1. […] Cauliflower Flan. Wow! What a concept. This creative lady lives in Beirut and came up with this recipe to celebrate […]

  2. […] noce moscata. L’ispirazione mi è venuta curiosando in rete, la ricetta originale la trovate qui. Mi è piaciuta molto la presentazione, anche se non è riuscita benissimo. Ho apportato alcune […]

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>