Monday, April 16, 2007

Simple Never Tasted So Good.......




I realize it's been a couple of years since the whole roasted cauliflower craze has spread. I mean, it's not exactly on the same level as say, the American Idol or Toyota Prius boom, but in food circles, it was pretty big news. Most people had thought of the colorless vegetable as boring, bland and out of favor (again, only in food circles;). Then one day, somewhere there came news that the plain little cauliflower transformed into something magical when roasted in the oven. Alas, a new side dish was born.

Lay out the raw cauliflower in one layer on a baking sheet......

As a long time fan of roasted cauliflower, I can't tell you enough how fantastically easy, healthy and delicious this dish is. It's also very versatile- you can add whatever spices you like, toss it together with some wheat pasta, buttered bread crumbs, garlic oil and parmesan for a fantastic vegetarian main course or serve it alongside any meat or seafood. I make a big batch almost every week- the results far exceed the minimal effort so I just can't help myself. If I'm low on time (as I was this past weekend) I just buy two bags of cauliflower florets from Trader Joe's instead of a whole head. After slicing them into "1/2 pieces, I simply toss them with a bit of olive oil, sea salt, pepper and whatever else I'm feeling at the moment. Yesterday I cut one red onion into large chunks and mixed it in with the cauliflower, sprinkled the whole thing with Madras curry powder and coriander seed, and baked at 450 degrees for 20 minutes. The hands-on part of this takes less than 10 minutes total, and you end up with a load of this caramelized, nutty and buttery dish that could hardly be any better for you.

After baking at 450 degrees for 20 minutes....

If you haven't tried this preparation, I highly recommend it. One of my favorite dinners last week was a big bowl of this topped with finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, accompanied by a crisp, Oyster Bay sauvignon blanc. Delicious!

4 comments:

Marvin said...

Cauliflower has always been one of the vegetables from my childhood that was poorly prepared by my dear mother, resulting in me hating cauliflower till this day. But I can see how roasting it with different spices could be delicious. I'll have to give it a try.

susan said...

i love roasted cauliflower! yours looks nicely carmelized. wow i think the last time i made that was in july! it's time for me to make it again. thanks for reminding me how good it is. :)

annie said...

Thanks to your inspiration I made this last night with carrots alongside. OMG, yummy. Everyone loved it and there was not a floret left! I roast alot of veggies, but never thought about "the flower". Thank you!

Tokyoastrogirl said...

Marvin: Yes, please give it a try. It will really change your perspective on this underappreciated veggie.

Susan: I love it too and wonder if I'll ever tire of it. At least it's good for you!

Annie: So happy you tried and liked it. If you ever have leftover roasted cauliflower, just puree it in a food processor with some chicken stock for a great soup.