I owe www.eGullet.org a lot—it taught me how to cook well and how to take chances with ingredients and cooking methods. This dish is a perfect example. I had made cauliflower every which way—I blanched it, sautéed it, boiled it, mashed it, deep fried it, and have even eaten it raw. But until eGullet, I never knew I could roast it! This recipe really brings out the richness of the cauliflower and is matched perfectly with the robustness of the spices. I use my fennel rub along with a few other spices. If you have sea salt, it works really well with this recipe. The cauliflower tends to shrink when roasted so one head of cauliflower is about right for 2 servings.
Prep/Cook time: 40 minutes
- 1 medium head cauliflower (about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Fennel-Chile Dry Rub
- 1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds, crushed
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt to start
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Cut the cauliflower into 1-inch florets and place in a large bowl. Drizzle with the oil and toss with your hands to coat each floret.
2. In a small bowl combine the dry rub, coriander, and salt. Add the spice mixture to the cauliflower. Once again, no tool is better than your hands. Get in there and make sure all the florets are well coated.
3. Place the cauliflower on a baking sheet and spread out evenly in a single layer. Don’t worry if it is a little crowded. If you really cannot fit it on one sheet, use two.
4. Bake for about 15 minutes. Stir and bake for another 15 minutes or until the cauliflower is well browned and cooked through. Serve hot.
From Modern Spice by Monica Bhide (Simon & Schuster, 2009).