This is a pasta I make with the cauliflower I rescue from the roasting pan. It's extremely satisfying, and has a gorgeous color from the red wine. I live alone, so I created a single-serving recipe, but it's a really easy one to size up. - queenie_nyc —queenie_nyc
Test Kitchen Notes
I could not wait to make queenie_nyc’s Pasta with Cauliflower and Red Wine. I imagined the cauliflower, pan-roasted until tender, bathed until tipsy in rich red wine, then spiced up with red pepper flakes and complemented with nutty Parmesan. When I finally made it, it surpassed my expectations. Easy to put together, it was a warming, delicious, and comforting dish. The cauliflower was perfectly cooked, tender crisp and not mushy. I have eaten “drunken” pasta before, that is, pasta cooked in red wine, but appreciated the restrained hand in queenie_nyc’s recipe. By cooking the pasta ahead of time and adding it to the wine-bathed cauliflower, the characteristic slightly bitter note from the wine complemented, rather than overpowered the final dish. In fact, I think the next time I feel like “drunken” pasta, I will turn to this recipe. - gingerroot —The Editors
short pasta, such as penne rigate or cavatappi
white onion, thinly sliced
large garlic clove, minced
head of cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
dry red wine
Generous pinch red pepper flakes
Finely grated parmesan cheese
In boiling, salted water, cook the pasta to al dente. Drain and set aside; do not rinse. (You can also cook the pasta while you make the sauce.)
Set a large skillet (I used my 12-incher) over high heat. Add enough olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of the pan, turn the heat to medium-high, and add the onions. Saute the onions for a few minutes until soft and fragrant, but not browned. Add the garlic and saute for a few minutes more, until you can smell the garlic and it has turned golden.
Add the cauliflower to the pan and saute for 4-6 minutes, until it has acquired a bit of color and begun to release its water. Sprinkle the mixture with a pinch of salt and deglaze the pan with the red wine. Add the pepper flakes and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the red wine is reduced to a syrupy glaze. Add the pasta to the skillet and cook for a minute or two, mixing it with the sauce and letting everything get to know each other.
Transfer the pasta and sauce to a shallow bowl, top with the cheese, taste for seasoning, and eat!