Pasta, if I may generalize a bit, is everyone’s favorite comfort food. Cauliflower is a highly popular vegetarian entree on it’s own. Together they create a quite yummy pasta entree. Despite it’s popularity, cauliflower is a veggie that isn’t usually my first pick for pasta toppings. But when you want pasta for lunch and you have 2 heads of cauliflower hanging around, you might as well go for it. This recipe gave me a reason to use half of my brassica stash. Oh, and the recipe is called Pasta With Roasted Romanesco and Capers, but says you can sub cauliflower or broccoli as needed. Versatility is my friend.
The recipe has a few steps so don’t bother when you need a 10 minute dinner fix. It also requires multiple pans: one for frying almonds and capers, then a roasting sheet, then a dutch oven, and yet another pan for cooking the pasta. The perfect detail from this meal is that it makes a full 4 servings of pasta, so even if you spend a little time on this then planned, you will definitely have another meal for a 2-person household.
Here are my tips/thoughts:
- Perhaps I’m throwing off the pasta-to-vegetable ratio here, but I used the whole head of a small cauliflower even though the recipe calls for half. In my opinion, the more veggies the better.
- I used rotini pasta instead of shells. Close enough, sort of?
- No white wine in the house = I went with chicken stock instead. I’m usually a proponent of subbing one out for the other in an emergency. This time it worked fine – I can see why the white wine might flesh out the overall flavor, but overall stock was a decent stand-in.
- Best to take the recipe’s directions seriously and use a dutch oven for the pasta tossing. It’s probably not as fun or as easy to toss this much pasta & oily nut bits without high walls shutting you off from the mess.
Anyways, this gets an A for being leftover-friendly, flexible (choice of brassicas in the recipe, liquid substitutions, possible nut switches), and vegetarian.
Recipe Link: Bon Appetit
Kitchen Mess: 3 out of 4 stars (seriously, how many pans can you mess up for one pasta meal? Apparently a few.)
Recommended For: Dutch Oven Owners, Fall Sunday Dinners, Vegetarians and Those Who Love Them
Not Recommended For: Brassica Haters, Non-Tomato Sauce Pasta Haters