This is a very simple and healthy dish that goes very well with sake or wine. I first encountered this recipe in a Japanese cook book entitled “men’s drinking snacks” 俺の肴 which was given to me by my high school classmate 20 some years ago. This recipe was by a famous Japanese painter/artist, late Taro Okamoto 岡本太郎. According to him, while he was living in Montparnasse, Paris, his Chinese friend, who was a good cook, used to make this dish as an hors d’oeuvre and he loved it. I have been making this for some time but I deviated slightly from the original recipe by adding red pepper flakes and substituting rice vinegar for regular white vinegar, added towards the end of cooking.
You could serve this hot or warm but it is best the next day. The combination of crunch, hot pepper, garlic and subtle vinegar taste all work together. Quoting from Taro Okamoto, “Once you taste this dish, you can not eat over-cooked limp cauliflower in a restaurant.”