This is a very simple recipe, from a book called Reds, Whites, and Greens, by Faith Willunger. As you might have gathered from the title, it’s a book of Italian things to do with vegetables. I’m yet to find a bad recipe in this book, which I will be reviewing in the near future. This recipe is lovely and fresh tasting, and gives cauliflower a zing I had not previously thought possible. It’s like a light version of cauliflower cheese. Only nicer.
Now what will you do with it?
Bring a pot of water to the boil. Divide the cauliflower into large florets, and add to the boiling water with a pinch of salt. Cook 2-3 minutes – you want the cauliflower to be just barely tender. Drain and refresh with cold water.
While the cauliflower is cooking, chop or slice the garlic finely, or crush it. Chop the parsley, and grate the cheese. Oil a baking dish large enough to fit the cauliflower in a single layer, and put the cooked cauliflower into it.
Put the olive oil into a small frying pan with the garlic and parsley, and cook over a gentle heat until the garlic begins to get golden – you are aiming for somewhere between sautéeing the garlic and infusing the oil.
Scatter the whole lot over the cauliflower. Season with salt and pepper and then sprinkle with the grated parmesan.
Bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until browned. Eat!
Obviously, this is not vegan, but it could be! I’d be inclined to go a sort of gremolata route with this – I’d assemble everything up to the salt and pepper, and then instead of grated cheese, add some finely grated lemon and pine nuts, possibly mixed with breadcrumbs. Just be warned that pine nuts burn in the blink of an eye – you may want to boil the cauliflower a shade longer and then bake it for 5-10 minutes instead of 15-20. Actually, this sounds like such a nice idea that I think I may need to try it next time…