One of my cooking clients recently told me that she is becoming a cauliflower fan because of me.  She has been on a very restricted diet and was not eating potatoes for a while and continues to stay away from rice. So on the evenings that I make the rest of her family something with potatoes or rice, I roast cauliflower for her. I either cut it into florets like in the picture above, or I put it in the food processor after roasting to give it a mashed potato-like texture.  This created a flavor that she hadn’t experienced before.

You may think cauliflower is a boring vegetable with no strong flavor or color. And when steamed it is bland. This is where the cooking technique comes in.

Roasting at high heat creates more flavor and texture. I could live the rest of my life without steamed or raw cauliflower. But once it goes into a 475-degree oven and turns a little brownish-black and crispy, well, it just becomes something completely different. This method of cooking creates caramelization (the dark brown bits) and the flavor of the cauliflower changes to something buttery and nutty, without it being drenched in butter.

I hope you will give this a try.

Roasted Cauliflower

Ingredients: 

1 head cauliflower (about 1 1/2 pounds),

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or just enough to drizzle and lightly coat the vegetable

2 teaspoons salt

Procedure:

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or tin foil.

Heat oven to 475 degrees and place one of the shelves on the lowest spot in the oven.

Trim cauliflower down to medium to bite-size florets. How the florets look isn’t important, but having them all around the same size is, or they will cook unevenly.

Place cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.

Toss the cauliflower around on the sheet to make sure they are all coated with some oil.  Sprinkle with salt and place on the lowest shelf in the oven.

Roast for 10 minutes, and then check to see how they are doing.  They should be sizzling and the bottoms should be turning brown.  The picture below is the browning you are looking for.

If they are not browning yet, leave in the oven and check again in 5 minutes. Pierce with a fork to test for doneness. You want the cauliflower to be slightly soft where the fork easily pierces through, but not mushy. They are extremely hot and will continue cooking once you remove them from the oven.

Once the cauliflower has the beautiful, crispy brown edges, remove from oven, place in a serving bowl and serve.

And if you eat dairy, then add some grated parmesan at the end and let it melt, like in this recipe from Bon Appetit.

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roasted cauliflower

Roasted Cauliflower

  • Author: Andrea Sprague
  • Prep Time: 5 Min
  • Cook Time: 10 Min
  • Total Time: 15 Min

Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, or just enough to drizzle and lightly coat the vegetable
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Instructions

  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or tin foil.
  2. Heat oven to 475 degrees and place one of the shelves on the lowest spot in the oven.
  3. Trim cauliflower down to medium to bite-size florets. How the florets look isn’t important, but having them all around the same size is, or they will cook unevenly.
  4. Place cauliflower on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil.
  5. Toss the cauliflower around on the sheet to make sure they are all coated with some oil.
  6. Sprinkle with salt and place on the lowest shelf in the oven.
  7. Roast for 10 minutes, and then check to see how they are doing.  They should be sizzling and the bottoms should be turning brown. If they are not browning yet, leave in the oven and check again in 5 minutes.
  8. Pierce with a fork to test for doneness. You want the cauliflower to be slightly soft where the fork easily pierces through, but not mushy. They are extremely hot and will continue cooking once you remove them from the oven.
  9. Once the cauliflower has the beautiful, crispy brown edges, remove from oven, place in a serving bowl and serve.


Notes

And if you eat dairy, then add some grated parmesan at the end and let it melt, like in this recipe from Bon Appetit.