Cast Iron

Cauliflower Al La Plancha

February 13, 2013
0 Ratings
  • Serves 2
Author Notes

I love coming home from work and being challenged with the ingredients that I have on hand. However scarce they may be, it allows me to really use my skills and creativity to come up with something unique. In this case, I had some leftover romesco that I made the night before. I knew it was mature enough where the flavors had ample time to meld. I thought pairing the the romesco with cauliflower would be perfect. Cauliflower can be bland if you don't season it properly. I was very proud of this dish because the charred flavor along with the romesco sauce was indescribably perfect. I hope that you'll try this recipe, and realize that you can make your weeknight meals much more exciting while using very few ingredients. The smoked paprika really shines through lending a nice smokey flavor with the char on the cauliflower. The sherry vinegar really adds nice zing to brighten up the flavors. —James Durazzo

What You'll Need
  • My basic interpretation for Romesco
  • 1 Jar of "Mancini" jarred roasted bell peppers
  • 1/2 Cup Pine Nuts (Lightly toasted)
  • 1 Cup of cherry tomatoes (blanched and peeled)
  • 1 Head of roasted garlic
  • 2-3 Tbsp of Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 Tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2-1 Cup of day old bread, crust removed
  • Cauliflower
  • 1 Small-medium head of cauliflower (base leaves removed)
  • 1 Tsp. of smoked paprika
  • 1 Tsp. Kosher salt
  • 1 Tsp Coarsely ground black pepper
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Handful of parsley leaves (stems removed)
  1. My basic interpretation for Romesco
  2. Preheat your oven to 275 degrees, slice your garlic head in half and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, and add salt and pepper. Roast until soft and aromatic. Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until you get the consistency you like. It should be somewhere in between smooth/thick. Taste for seasoning, and adjust to your taste. I like it to have some tartness to it. Set this aside in the refrigerator, or you can use it straight away.
  1. Cauliflower
  2. Remove the base leaves from the cauliflower, and using a sharp chef knife, slice the head into one inch slices. If you slice it thick enough, it will hold together.
  3. Lay the slices flat onto a plate or cutting board, drizzle extra virgin olive oil over each slice, sprinkle with the smoked paprika, and add kosher salt/black pepper.
  4. It's best if you use a cast iron pan, as it will allow you to get nice color on each slice. Preheat the cast iron skillet until it starts to smoke, you want it to be extremely hot as if you're about to sear a steak. Lay each slice of cauliflower seasoned side down into the pan. Let these sear without moving them around for about a minute or two. You can take a peak to check for color, then turn them over carefully using a flat fish turner or a flat spatula. Season the other side.
  5. Once you turn them and season the second side. turn the heat down to low, and let them cook through until slightly tender. I like them to have some resistance, I dont want them to be over cooked and too soft.
  6. Once you get the nice brown color on the first side, and you feel they're cooked to your liking, remove from the skillet. Drizzle the romesco sauce over each slice using either a spoon or a squeeze bottle. Garnish with parsley leaves and serve.

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