Roasted Rainbow Cauliflower

Roasted Cauliflowers

I was totally into roasting vegetables this year. Fell in love with Brussel sprouts this winter. Hear that mom?
Never liked them boiled or steamed…makes them more biter. I have included some of my favorite cooked winter vegetables dishes. The Roasted Winter Vegetables was our side dish with our organic turkey this year. We skip the mashed potatoes because these roasted vegetables are incredibly delicious, sweet and satisfying,

As the seasons change, cauliflower was bursting out in colors at farmer’s market. I couldn’t resist. I had to buy a head in every color! Not just your ordinary white, but green, purple, yellow (like butter) and even Romanesco which is an Italian variety that looks like a green turban. I added shallots and leeks to balance them and lots of fresh chopped herbs. Beautiful and so sweet….Enjoy!

Roasted Rainbow Cauliflower
with Fresh Herbs
(Serves 4-6)

2 cups cauliflower (white, butter, purple or romanesco)
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into large matchsticks
1 large fresh red onion, quartered
1 bunch baby carrots
1 large leek, green top removed, bottom sliced 1-inch diagonal
2 cloves of elephant garlic, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp fresh tarragon leaves
½ tsp dried thyme leaves
1 tsp fresh chives, chopped
2 Tbs fresh parsley, minced
¼ tsp sea salt

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut cauliflower into small bite-size pieces. Sweet potato should be peeled and sliced into large matchstick-style cuts. Red onion can be sliced into quarters or into rounds. Baby carrots should just be cleaned and trimmed.

2. To clean leeks, cut across the leek where the white and green parts meet. Keep top and bottoms separate. Cut white part on a one inch diagonal cut. Soak in water to remove dirt for several minutes. Rinse and drain and add to the remaining vegetables. Reserve green tops for soup stock at a later time. Chop garlic coarsely.

3. Place all vegetables in a large mixing bowl. Drizzle oil liberally over the vegetables and toss.

4. Add thyme, chives, parsley, tarragon and salt and toss again. In a large baking pan or cookie sheet layer vegetables on one single layer. If the pan is too small to accommodate all these vegetables use a second pan. Do not cover. Bake for 40 minutes. Vegetables should be tender and a little caramelized at the tip. Depending on the size of the cut you made, you will have to adjust cooking time a little less or more minutes. The smaller the matchstick the quicker it will cook.

Bites of Insight: If you pre-soak an onion for 10 minutes before you peel and chop, you will avoid irritated eyes, and the onion will peel much easier. Sorry, should have told you earlier. Always use fresh whole carrots. The popular “baby” carrots are one tenth of the nutritional value of a regular carrot. They are made from the broken carrot pieces during harvest that are shaved and shaped into a “baby” carrot.

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