Roasted Cauliflower with Crispy Capers and Lemon

Posted on 15 March 2012 | 1 comment | share this

Based on my record over the last month or so, February proved to be the least inspiring month on record for blogging. February and early March is a dark, cold and uninspiring time of year in this part of the world. But I can say that I clocked many hours in the kitchen cooking up all forms of soups, stews and slow cooked meals and of course some sweets in there too. I am slowly coming out of hibernation as the chives, onions, garlic and other brave veggies start to poke their heads above ground. While I watch the rain, snow, hail, wind and sun pass by my window, I dream about warmer days, spring greens and summer berries. Until then I thought I would share this cheerful and tasty cauliflower dish.

This simple yet delicious dish was inspired by a few everyday ingredients. It was created with the help of my dear brother as part of a birthday dinner celebration for my lovely mom. As simple as it is, it was one of my favourite dishes of the evening.

This recipe has a few steps but is really quite simple. It has a nice balance with the creamy nuttiness of the roasted cauliflower, the salty punch of the anchovies and crispy capers, the acidity of the lemon juice and brightness of the fresh parsley. I like it with a healthy amount of lemon juice, the tang plays off of the other flavours really nicely but you can adjust it to your preference. The dish can be served warm or prepared ahead and served at room temperature. We served it as part of a multi-course meal but it would be lovely served along side any kind of seafood or grilled meats.

That’s it for now. I promise to be back sooner than later. As Spring arrives, the local bounty increases in abundance once again and so will my inspiration in the kitchen.

What’s inspiring you in the kitchen these days? I would love to hear what you are up to.

Roasted Cauliflower with Crispy Capers and Lemon

A simple set of ingredients come together beautifully here with the creaminess of the roasted cauliflower, salty hit of the crispy capers and anchovies, acidity of the lemon juice and brightness of the fresh parsley. Delicious on its own or lovely served alongside fish, seafood or grilled meats of any kind. This dish is nice served warm or at room temperature.

Serves 4

1 large head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into bite size florets

3 Tbsp olive oil, divided

1/4 tsp salt

2 large garlic cloves, minced

3 anchovy filets, finely chopped

1-2 Tbsp lemon juice, half a large lemon

1 pinch red chili flakes

2 Tbsp finely chopped flat leaf parsley

2 Tbsp capers, drained and patted dry

Preheat oven to 350F. Toss cauliflower florets with 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1/4 tsp of salt. Spread the cauliflower out into a single layer on a large baking sheet. Depending on the size of your baking sheet, you made need two baking sheets. The more spread out the cauliflower is, the faster it will cook and the nicer it will brown. Roast, tossing a few times, until the cauliflower is golden and tender. About 35 – 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the capers (drained and patted dry) and cook until the capers are crispy, golden, and slightly shriveled. About 3-4 minutes. Turn off the heat, remove the capers (leaving any remaining olive oil in the skillet) from the pan and place on a paper towel lined plate to cool and crisp up.

Once the cauliflower is roasted, remove from the oven and set aside. In the same skillet as you cooked the capers, heat remaining Tbsp of olive oil. Add the minced garlic and anchovies and cook for about one minute or until fragrant but not browned. Toss in the roasted cauliflower, red chili flakes and the lemon juice. Turn off the heat and taste for seasoning. Add more lemon, chili flakes or salt as needed. Transfer the cauliflower to a serving bowl or platter. Scatter with the crispy capers and chopped parsley. Serve warm or at room temperature.


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