Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Side dish: roasted cauliflower

I'm a true food nerd. Often times I have a recipe in my head that I just have to try out. These ideas for dished just pop into my head form time to time. A couple of months ago I had dinner with some friends who made a simple and delicious roasted cauliflower dish that was styled on Indian cuisine. They just took various spices and coated cauliflower florets with and roasted it. Cauliflower already has a pretty good natural taste to it in my opinion, and the spice combination did a decent job of complimenting this natural flavor.

Ever since then, and after tweaking and "perfecting"* my marinade, I've been thinking of how to take the great interaction that exists between chili powder and brown sugar and add it to other dishes. For some reasons combining those two ingredients seems to give rise to a new flavor that is better than the sum of their parts. So I decided that instead of using Indian spices I would experiment and alter my marinade to work as a spice mixture with which to roast cauliflower.

So here's what I did -- and it was good.

  • One head of cauliflower
  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/8 cup white vinegar
  • 2.5 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
Chop the head of cauliflower into florets and set it aside. Add all the other ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir well until well mixed. Add the florets a few at a time and stir into the spice mixture, making sure each piece is coated, after which you will add it to a roasting pan or casserole dish. Keep doing this until all the cauliflower is covered. Put it in preheated oven at 425F uncovered for 10 minutes. Then take it out and stir it, and put it back in for another 10 minutes.

That should do it. If you don't think there is enough of the spice mixture (some cauliflower heads are bigger than others) then add more of each ingredient. This dish goes really well with my meatloaf. I had it the other night.

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