Heart Healthy Recipe: Curried Cauliflower and Couscous Pilaf

photoEven though American Heart Month ends this week, you can still eat with your heart in mind all year round. Virginia Mason’s new executive chef, Brian Brooks, shared his food philosophy and this delicious cauliflower recipe to keep us in a heart healthy mood:

“I believe food is meant not only as nutrition for the body, but it can bring comfort to the soul or the nostalgic feelings of great memory. I became a chef to be a part of that experience and perhaps create new memories while nourishing the body,” says Chef Brian. “I have centered the breadth of my career around the flavors of the Mediterranean because it has a magnificent cuisine that not only captures bold flavors and spices, but is also naturally healthier and lower in processed foods than many of the other cuisines on the planet. This combination naturally provides a balance between great flavors and fresh, healthy food.” 

Curried Cauliflower and Couscous Pilaf

Courtesy of Chef Brian Brooks, Virginia Mason Food & Nutrition Services 

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil   
1 teaspoon orange zest
2 tablespoon curry powder 
1/4 cup orange juice
4 cups  sliced cauliflower florets 
1/4 cup  currents
1/2 teaspoon salt 
2/3 cups  couscous
3/4 cups reduced sodium chicken broth          
1/2 cup  sliced scallion tops 


  1. Toss cauliflower in oil and curry powder, then roast in a 450 degree oven until slightly charred.  
  2. In a pot, bring salt, broth, orange juice, orange zest and currents to a boil.
  3. Stir in couscous and scallions.  
  4. Remove from heat and let stand covered until liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes.  
  5. Fluff and add cooked cauliflower.  
  6. Refrigerate until ready to use.  

Serve chilled.  Makes 6 servings 

Chef Brian currently owns and operates Hunger Restaurant in Fremont with his wife Jaime. In the four years it has been open, Hunger has established itself as a source of culinary excellence in the Seattle area for both local sourcing and bringing the bold flavors of the Iberian Peninsula to Fremont.

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