AoSF: Sautéed Cauliflower

Sautéeing Cauliflower
I think I should chop the cauliflower finer than this… but it looks cool in these flat slices. Maybe fewer at a time.

   I’m starting up a new series of blog entries here, to document my culinary experiments with Alice Waters’ cookbook, The Art of Simple Food. I have a few goals for this project. First, I’m hoping to learn some new recipes this summer for cooking, and I have some particular objectives: I want to learn to make some foods that are seasonally appropriate, that I like eating, and that can be grown in a New England garden.

Sautéed Cauliflower

One of the things that I like about this cookbook is the way the first half of the book is ‘beginner recipes’ designed to teach techniques.  She suggested cutting the cauliflower in 1/4″-thick sheets, and letting it crumble a bit during the sauté process in just a little bit of oil.  I followed this direction … and… got these huge chunks of cauliflower that weren’t very easy to brown.  I also cooked them for the recommended amount of time, but I think I either need more time or more heat, because the browned parts were delicious, but some of the stems were a little tough.

I also added in a tablespoonful of the Salsa Verde I’d made earlier in the day (this was Sunday). The little bit of tanginess and parsley and salt was a delicious addition. I really enjoyed this dish, but — as i mentioned, I think I’ll have to chop up the cauliflower a bit more, although the brain-like texture of the cauliflower was visually interesting. It just didn’t brown up the way the recipe suggested. Next time, more heat or more time, possibly both.

Found in The Art of Simple Food, p. 119.

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  1. Cauliflower stems are tougher than the tops, so just cut off more of the stems next time. If you want to use the stems, chop THEM smaller. If you cut the stems shorter, obviously, the florets will break apart a bit, as she suggests. This sounds good, especially for someone who loves the flavor of roasted vegetables but prefers to use the stovetop.

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