Sicilian Cauliflower Salad

During Christmas time, this salad is called Insalata di Rinforzo or Rinforzata and is served on tables thru Sicily and Naples (and New Jersey!).

The name means “reinforced salad” because it can be prepared for the Christmas Eve dinner, and then “reinforced” adding more ingredients to last until January.

I have seen it with hard boiled eggs, chopped pickles, chickpeas and other vegetables.

I did not plan to keep this salad for weeks, but eating it for lunch for a few days, therefore, no reinforcements needed!

This recipe is not the traditional Sicilian version, because it uses less vinegar and adds golden raisins and orange juice. It is a delicious winter salad. (ok, maybe I will add a hard boiled egg to it tomorrow!).

Sicilian Cauliflower Salad: (adapted from Vegetarian Times)

1 medium head cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
1/3 cup fresh orange juice
4 Tbs. white balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced (about 1 tsp.)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup pimento-stuffed olives, drained and coarsely chopped
2 Tbs. capers, drained and coarsely chopped

Cook cauliflower in pot of boiling salted water 7 to 9 minutes, or until fork-tender. Rinse under cold water to stop further cooking, and drain.

Whisk together juice, vinegar and garlic in large bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season with salt and pepper. Add cauliflower and remaining ingredients, and toss to coat. Chill in refrigerator overnight, or up to 2 days. The longer it sits, the better it is.

You will love this easy salad!


I love cauliflower salads...we serve one on Christmas Eve a little different than this. Will definitely try this out soon!
The JR said…
Never had a cauliflower salad before. It's a pretty dish for the table.
The Food Hunter said…
I've never heard of this...but it sounds wonderful.
Joanne said…
I love the Sicilian tradition of adding raisins to savory dishes. that combination of sweet and salty just can't be beat! What a great salad.
Linda said…
You've got a winter winner here Stacey - I've always loved those rinforzo salads.
Ciao Chow Linda said…
That last comment was from me Stacey - used the wrong sign-in.
That salad looks really good - I have just recently realized I like cauliflower and this is the perfect recipe! Love its versatility too - thanks for sharing:)
Dana said…
Look at you! Vegetarian Times! I am so proud... I love the base of this and all the additions just sound heavenly to me. Hard boiled eggs, chickpeas, olives, yes please!
I make something like this, only with lots of hot peppers added. Love this kind of stuff, it goes good with everything!