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Fire Water Grilled Cauliflower

Inspired by our town's annual lantern festival, my Fire Water Grilled Cauliflower combines sweet cauliflower with a dark bowl of fiery broth. 


Fire Water

  • 3 celery stalks chopped
  • ½ tsp Sichuan pepper corns smashed
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper corns smashed or ground 
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt + plus more if needed
  • 2 cloves garlic smashed
  • 1 thumb ginger sliced
  • 1 long chilli chopped
  • 1/2 litre 500ml waterGrilled Cauliflower
  • 1 whole cauliflower cut in to 1.5cm steaks
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon soy
  • 1 teaspoon black vinegar or rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • 1   x 2 cm thumb ginger grated
  • 2 celery stalks sliced in 1 cm slices on an angle
  • 1 bunch spring onions the whites cut in to 2 cm batons. Finely chop some of the greens for garnish. 
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil for grillingSteamed rice to serve.
  • Chopped celery leaves


  • To prepare the cauliflower, combine the maple syrup, soy sauce, sesame oil, vinegar, garlic and ginger in a small bowl. 
  • Lay the cauliflower in a rectangle pan and drizzle with the marinade. Set aside.
  • For the fire water, place all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. 
  • Taste the water and season if needed. IT WILL BE PEPPERY!
  • Strain the fire water in to a jug or jar and set aside.
  • Heat a griddle pan or BBQ and oil. Press the cauliflower steaks down and drizzle with the marinade. Cook for around four minutes or until griddle marks appear. 
  • Turn the steaks over and add the chopped celery and spring onions. Cook for another four minutes or until the cauliflower is cooked through. 
  • Spoon some steamed rice on to a plate or bowl and top with a cauliflower steak. Spoon fire water over the top and sprinkle with chopped celery leaves and spring onions. 


1 tablespoon = 20 ml
1 teaspoon = 5 ml
1 litre = 1000 ml
Store the fire water in a sealed jar in the refrigerator for up to a week.