Friday, June 4, 2010

Cauliflower anyone?

I am a raw veggie junkie, I must admit. I much prefer most vegetables raw than their cooked, usually soggy cousins. The exception to this rule is a pan of good roasted veggies, which are super easy to fire up and serve for dinner. (see basic recipe below) But I'm trying to eat better and more whole, natural foods. In learning more about veggies, I've been told that cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli or cauliflower, are actually better for you if they are cooked first. Imagine my dismay...I refuse to eat cooked broccoli for any reason. It's just so disgusting, soggy, unappetizing, and just plain blech. But cauliflower, I might be willing to try, if there was a good roasted cauliflower recipe...leave it to Jillian to have a great one in her book, The Master Your Metabolism Cookbook. I gave it a try and was pleasantly surprised. Was it as good as in its natural state? No, but it was good enough to want to make again, and it was good enough to eat as leftovers the next day.

Roasted cauliflower and almonds (again, I altered the recipe to meet my pantry needs)

1 small cauliflower, cut into florets
1 clove elephant garlic, thinly sliced (Jillian actually calls for a shallot, but I didn't have one)
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp honey

Mix the cauliflower, garlic, almonds, olive oil, honey, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Mix well until cauliflower is well coated with honey and oil. Transfer to a shallow roasting pan (I used a half sheet pan) and spread mixture in a single layer. Bake in a 425 degree oven until the cauliflower is tender and brown in spots, about 20 minutes. Stir occasionally.

When it comes out, it is tender, but not mushy, and the caramelized garlic adds a lovely sweetness, while the clusters of honeyed almonds give it great texture.

If you're against cooked cruciferous veggies like me, you might try this one and see if you like it.

Basic recipe for roasted veggies

Use whatever veggies you have on hand: I usually use asparagus, crimini mushrooms, garlic, onions, small potatoes, bell peppers (various colors), squash, zucchini, and anything else I can find that looks good.

Try to cut the veggies in similar sizes (except the asparagus, which you just need to get rid of the woody bottom part and then keep it whole). Lay them out in a single layer on a half sheet pan, or shallow roasting pan. I usually make enough for two pans, because these are delicious as leftovers. Drizzle olive oil over the top of the veggies and liberally season with salt, pepper or any other seasoning you might like (garlic salt, Lawrys, Johnnys, Montreal Steak Seasoning, etc.) With clean hands, mix thoroughly until all veggies are coated well. Spread out again into a single layer. Bake in a 450 degree oven for 20 minutes. They will come out delicious and delightful every single time!

Just remember that if you have thicker, more dense veggies like butternut squash, carrots, or potatoes, you might need a little longer to cook those. At the 20 minute mark, pull out the lighter veggies (asparagus, zucchini, etc.) and set aside, while you put the others back in for another 10-15 minutes.

In the summertime, sometimes we just have this and garlic toasted pita bread for dinner. It's filling, healthy, and quite delicious!


  1. Yuck! I do not eat cauliflower, but I do LOVE roasted veggies as well. So, for you my dear, I will TRY these out! :) See the faith I have in you! ;) tee-hee

  2. Yea! This really is good - I hope you like it. Thanks for the faith, silly friend! Let me know what you think - if it's not for you, that's ok, too! There's nothing in this world that could make me eat cooked broccoli!