I’ve completely changed my tune about cauliflower rice.
I used to think it was more effort than it was worth. But ever since I discovered frozen cauliflower rice in my supermarket, new ideas keep popping into my head.
Like this simple Indian-inspired tray bake.
Love how you just plonk everything in the oven and set a timer and then dinner is ready with practically no effort. The secret to keeping it quick is to use the hottest setting in your oven and not waiting for the oven to completely pre heat.
That way the food starts cooking at the lower temperature and then speeds up at the end. Bakers call this cooking in a ‘rising’ oven and it’s a fantastic ninja trick to get the speedy benefits of high temp cooking without the risk of burning.
If you haven’t been organised enough to defrost the cauli first, no worries! Just add an extra 2-3 minutes to the cooking time.
And of course salmon isn’t the only protein that will work here. See the variations below for more ideas.
If you’re using the curry powder + smoked paprika option instead of the tandoori spice – I like to serve with a little squeeze of lemon for some extra freshness.
Fast Roast Tandoori Salmon
- 500 g cauliflower rice defrosted
- 2 small salmon fillets
- 1 tablespoon tandoori spice OR 2 teaspoons each curry powder and smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1 bunch mint or coriander, optional
- 25 g roast cashews or other nuts
- 150 g Greek yoghurt
Crank your oven to the highest setting.
Line your largest rimmed baking tray with paper. Spread cauliflower over the surface of the tray.
Cut salmon into halves or thirds. Place on the tray, moving the cauliflower out of the way so the salmon is touching the tray - this will help the heat conduct and the salmon will cook quicker.
In a small bowl mix your spice, oil and salt. Drizzle the spiced oil over the salmon fillets.
Pop the tray in the oven (don't wait for it to come up to temperature). Set your timer for 12 minutes.
While the salmon is cooking, pick the leaves from the stems of your herbs (if using) or just chop them. Roughly chop the cashews.
When the timer goes, check the salmon - if it's cooked to your liking, you're ready to serve. If not return for another few minutes.
To serve scatter the herbs (if using) and cashews over the salmon and rice. Dollop on the yoghurt. Let everyone dig in from the tray.
NET CARBS 16g/100g
Variations & Substitutions for Roast Tandoori Salmon
plan-B (pantry) – skip the fresh herbs or just freeze them and use them defrosted.
vegetarian – chickpeas, eggplant, mushrooms, white beans, tofu, tempeh.
different protein – as above or use chicken breast or thigh fillets (slice finely so they will cook through), sausages, meatballs, steak, eggs (make little nests in the rice).
different spice – you can use plain curry powder, garam masala, baharat, ground cumin, ground coriander, or a combo of cumin coriander and smoked paprika, all spice can be nice as well or the Moroccan spice blend ras el hanout.
more substantial (carb lovers) – steamed or fried rice. Also good in wraps.
more substantial (low carb) – more salmon, more yoghurt, more nuts, avocado.
Low FODMAP – skip cauli and serve with steamed rice.
family-friendly – the tandoori spice isn’t hot or use a mild curry powder or garam masala.
different vegetables – any frozen veggie rice will work. Or use fresh grated cauli. Chunks of veg will work just cook it first before adding the salmon. The spicy salmon is also amazing on baby spinach leaves or wrapped into lettuce cups like sang choi bau. I’ve also been thinking of using defrozed spinach and seeing how it goes in the oven.
more fancy / for entertaining – serve onto plates!
Waste Avoidance Strategy
cauliflower rice – keep in the freezer.
salmon fillets – freeze them.
spices / oil / salt / nuts – keep them in the pantry.
mint – best to use for another meal. leaves can be frozen but will wilt when defrosted so not ideal. Alternatively make a mint oil by packing washed and dried leaves in a clean dry glass jar and covering with extra virgin olive oil.
coriander – best to use for another meal. Can be frozen but will wilt when defrosted.
yoghurt – usually has a shelf life of a month or so. Otherwise, have it for another meal like breakfast! Don’t freeze.
Problem Solving Guide
bland – more salt! Or a squeeze of lemon. Or if you like it hot a splash of your favourite hot sauce (my Irishman loves it with Tabasco).
too dry – overcooked salmon. Next time check earlier. For now the yoghurt will help.
no oven – you can cook everything in a frying pan. Warm up the cauli first then divide between 2 plates. Then pan fry the salmon with the spiced oil on a medium heat for about 5 minutes on each side or until cooked to your liking.
Yes! Just cook as per the recipe but keep the nuts, herbs and yoghurt separately. Leftovers will keep in the fridge for 1-2 weeks or can be frozen. To serve, either warm in the oven or in a frying pan with a little oil then top with the nuts, yoghurt and herbs.
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- Lime & Chipotle Chilli Chicken
- Lemon Basil Roast Chicken
- Lemon & Za’atar Chicken