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Walnut Creek Magazine

Cauliflower Power

Like its green cousins, kohlrabi, broccoli, and collards, cauliflower thrives in cool, wet weather.
Rich in fiber and B-vitamins, it can be cooked, boiled, pickled, or eaten raw. Although white is the most recognizable of the bunch, cauliflower also comes in orange, green, and purple varieties. Here are some creative recipes from local chefs and foodies so you can cut your cauliflower and eat it too. 

PENNE PASTA WITH ROASTED CAULIFLOWER, OLIVES, AND HERBS
By chefalisonnegrin.com
Serves 10
INGREDIENTS:
2 pounds penne or fusilli pasta
3/4 cup olive oil
1 T salt
1 cup whole green olives
3 pounds small cauliflower florets
3/4 pound chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 Tbsp. fresh chopped tarragon
1 Tbsp. fresh chopped thyme
2 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. chili flakes
Salt and pepper, to taste
3/4 pound coarsely grated parmesan cheese
DIRECTIONS: Cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water until al dente. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. While the pasta is cooking, coarsely chop green olives and set aside. Toss the cauliflower with chopped garlic, fresh thyme, fresh tarragon, olive oil, salt, and chili flakes. Roast the seasoned cauliflower in the oven on sheet pans at 375 degrees until slightly golden brown. Put the roasted cauliflower in a large bowl with green onions, herbs, olives, and olive oil. Add the warm pasta to the bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Add cheese, drizzle with a little extra olive oil, toss again, and serve.
 


COLORFUL CAULIFLOWER LEEK SOUP

By CUESA Farmers’ Market
 
INGREDIENTS:
1 medium cauliflower (purple, orange, white, or a mixture)
2 medium leeks, trimmed and chopped
2 Tbsps. butter
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 cups milk or plain soymilk
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper 
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
Salt & Pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS: Break cauliflower into small chunks and add to pot with broth. Melt butter in saucepan over low heat. Cook leeks until soft. Add leeks to pot with cauliflower broth & simmer about 12 minutes. Remove about 90% of vegetable mixture & puree. Stir back into pot with milk and heat. Stir in cheddar cheese and add cayenne pepper to taste.
 


CURRIED CAULIFLOWER WITH GOLDEN RAISINS AND ALMONDS

By Lemonade Founder & Executive Chef Alan Jackson
Serves 4
INGREDIENTS:
1 head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 cup whole almonds, toasted
¼ cup golden raisins
½ cup Curry Vinaigrette (below)
 
DIRECTIONS: Preheat oven to 400-degrees F. Put cauliflower on baking sheet, drizzle with oil. Toss to coat and spread out in a single layer. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25-30 minutes until slightly charred. Put roasted cauliflower in mixing bowl; add almonds and raisins. Toss with curry vinaigrette to evenly coat. Serve dish warm, cold, or at room temperature.
 
Curry Vinaigrette
Makes 1 cup
1 cup plus 2 Tbsps. canola oil
1 green apple, cored, and coarsely chopped
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsps. turmeric
1 Tbsp. curry powder
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. honey
2 Tbsps. apple cider vinegar
Juice of ½ lemon
1 Tbsp. orange juice
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
 
DIRECTIONS: Place a small pot over medium-low heat and coat with 2 Tbsps. of oil. When oil is hot, add apple and onion. Cook and stir until soft, 2-3 minutes. Add turmeric and curry, cook about one minute. Pour in remaining one cup of oil and stir together. Increase heat and bring to a boil for another minute. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Strain and discard apple and onion. Set aside. Combine mustard, honey, vinegar, lemon, and orange juices in a mixing bowl. Blend with a whisk; season with salt and pepper. Pour in curry oil and blend until ingredients come together.
 


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