Nutmeg Cauliflower Cous Cous | A Recipe From Camp Jabulani

Camp Jabulani

For the next carb-conscious cauliflower recipe from our Chefs of Africa, Camp Jabulani in South Africa’s Head Chefs, Dylan Frost and Johan Kriek, and Sous Chef, Alex Van As, who have presented us with a nutmeg-scented cauliflower cous cous to accompany a slow braised oxtail ballotine with beetroot purée, grilled pearl onions, roasted carrot fondant, cinnamon mushrooms and thyme jus.

“With the ever-increasing awareness of healthy eating and food trends, as a trio of young chefs, we felt that it was important to introduce nourishing and tasty alternatives to starch as well as to re-introduce foods that may have now become ‘old and boring’.

“Who remembers the overcooked cauliflower florets swimming in gravy with Sunday roasts? This is a vegetable that within itself is one of the healthiest foods on earth, with a rich supply of phyto-chemicals and anti-inflammatory compounds, so to introduce this into our repertoire of delicious recipes has been an enjoyable accomplishment.

“The dish that we have created is an elegant and healthy dish with a fine dining twist, taking this underrated flavoursome vegetable to a new level of creativity, allowing guests to experience one of the most unappreciated foods at its best.”

Camp Jabulani


Oxtail Ballotine

  • 4 whole onions skin on and quartered
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 100g thyme
  • 4 tomatoes quartered
  • 4 carrots roughly chopped
  • 2 sticks of celery and leeks roughly chopped
  • 125g unsalted butter
  • 125ml soya sauce
  • 125ml balsamic vinegar
  • 500ml port
  • 250ml tomato paste
  • 2kg oxtail

Braising liquid: Melt the butter in a large pot and sauté the onions until golden brown, add the garlic and thyme as well as the celery, tomatoes, carrots and leeks. Sweat the vegetables off until soft to the touch. De-glaze the pot with the balsamic vinegar and red wine then add the soya sauce. Add the tomato paste and allow to simmer on a low heat.

Oxtail: Take the oxtail and sear it off in a hot pan until a brown crust has developed. Place the brown oxtail into a deep oven proof tray and pour the braising liquid over until the oxtail is completely covered, cover the tray with foil. Place in the oven at 140 degrees Celsius and allow to cook for the next 8 hours making sure to check every hour to make sure that the liquid is sufficient.

Camp Jabulani

Cauliflower cous cous

  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • 10 ml nutmeg
  • 100ml full fat cream
  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 10g finely chopped onion

In a pan sauté the onion on a low heat until soft and almost see thru add the butter nutmeg and full fat cream and allow to reduce. Take the cauliflower and finely grate it, place it in a pan with a little olive oil and salt, add the reduced cream and cook the mixture out until stiff consistency already to serve.

Beetroot purée

250g beetroot
10ml sherry vinegar
25ml honey
5ml salt
1L water

Cook the beetroot in the sherry vinegar, honey, salt and water until soft. Blend the beetroot with 50ml of the remaining liquid and strain through a fine sieve. Ready to serve.

Cauli cous cous

Carrot fondants

  • 3 carrots
  • 250g butter
  • A pinch of salt

Cut the carrots into 5mm x 5mm x 4cm sticks and place in a tray with butter and salt place the oven for 15 minutes and remove from the oven grill the carrot for extra colour.

Grilled pearl onions

  • 200g pearl onions
  • Olive oil
  • Black pepper
  • Pinch of salt

Cut the onions in half and blanch for 1 minute 30 seconds remove from the water and place directly into ice water to stop the cooking process. Dry the onions off and rub with the olive, salt and black pepper and grill them off on a grill pan and place them in the oven.


Cinnamon mushrooms

  • 100g button mushrooms thinly sliced
  • 5ml cinnamon
  • 10g unsalted butter
  • Pinch of salt

Place a the butter into a hot pan and add the button mushrooms and cook until soft and brown sprinkle the cinnamon over the mushrooms and sauté for a further minute. Ready to serve.

Thyme jus

  • 1L beef stock
  • 350 ml red wine
  • 50g thyme

In a hot pot, pour the red wine and reduce by half, add the beef stock and thyme and reduce by three quarters and until the sauce just coats the back of the spoon. Strain through a fine sieve, heat on the stove until ready to serve. Be careful not to reduce too much as this could lead to an extremely rich sauce that could overpower the flavours of the entire dish.

Camp Jabulani