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Roasting frozen cauliflower?

frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 07:54 AM

I have a ton in the freezer that I blanched first. If roasted, would it come out OK or a soggy mess?

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  1. momskitchen RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 07:57 AM

    I think it would be just fine....

    1. linguafood RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 08:29 AM

      The best way to find out, obviously, is to give it a shot. However, I would worry that the cauli can't be dried enough for it to roast properly. Whenever I roast cauli, it's fresh, and I wash it either a day ahead and let it dry overnight, or wash it WAY ahead of time so there is no liquid left.

      Let us know how it turned out.

      4 Replies
      1. re: linguafood
        alanbarnes RE: linguafood Feb 9, 2011 09:10 AM

        Agreed that eliminating excess moisture is the key to successful roasting. I've even been known to use my daughters' blow dryer on a chicken now and then.

        But I'm afraid that the blanching and freezing will have broken down the cellular structure to the point that the cauliflower will turn out mushy. If so, all is not lost; can you say "cauliflower soup"?

        1. re: alanbarnes
          scubadoo97 RE: alanbarnes Feb 9, 2011 03:40 PM

          me thinks you are correct.

          1. re: alanbarnes
            ludmilasdaughter RE: alanbarnes Feb 9, 2011 04:09 PM

            Alan, you are brilliant. I am SO using the hair dryer trick next time I roast a chicken, just for the reaction from my hubby, who already thinks my cooking habits can be "kooky."

            1. re: ludmilasdaughter
              mcf RE: ludmilasdaughter Feb 11, 2011 06:47 AM

              I don't go to such lengths and my cauliflower and chicken both cook up well crisped or carmelized. I dry chicken with paper towels, brush with melted butter and roast at 400 for a beautifully browned skin. Another alternative is to clean it, blot it, and keep it in the fridge uncovered overnight. That's how I dry and crisp up turkeys for deep frying for Thanksgiving.

        2. mcf RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 09:19 AM

          I also think it would be a textural disaster, maybe better suited to use in a cream soup or in a bake with cheese?

          1. greygarious RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 09:26 AM

            I agree that the texture will probably be too soft but it's worth a try as long as you have the ingredients on hand to turn it into soup if need be. Thaw it on a rack first, preferably setting up a portable fan to blow on it for several hours until the exterior is dry. Roast it on the rack to allow maximum heat circulation and prevent the florets sitting in exuded puddles.

            4 Replies
            1. re: greygarious
              frogmountain RE: greygarious Feb 9, 2011 09:31 AM

              Thanks for the tips, all. I think you are right -- it is destined for soup.

              1. re: frogmountain
                momskitchen RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 11:55 AM

                I'd still try roasting it - if you blanched it minimally, it will still be crisp. I've got some frozen cauliflower in my fridge and I will try it tonight. I have to say that blowing on it with a fan or blow drying or leaving it out to dry overnight is making things too difficult.

              2. re: greygarious
                Frosty Melon RE: greygarious Feb 9, 2011 09:49 AM

                Would a salad spinner work to remove the moisture?

                1. re: Frosty Melon
                  ChefJune RE: Frosty Melon Feb 9, 2011 10:00 AM

                  That might work somewhat, but I think you would have to blot each piece individually to remove the maximum moisture. I don't even rely on just a salad spinner to dry lettuces.

              3. onceadaylily RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 10:11 AM

                Timely question. I actually tried to roast a frozen vegetable last night (green beans . . . I know, I'm a little embarrassed that I tried). They started out a bit firm, but become softer the longer I roasted it, and shriveled rather than crisped. The flavor did change somewhat, but it was hardly tasty enough to reward me for my impatience (my market trip is tomorrow). In fact, they came out surprisingly close canned beans, but without the metallic taste.

                1 Reply
                1. re: onceadaylily
                  momskitchen RE: onceadaylily Feb 9, 2011 11:52 AM

                  I don't buy vegetables out of season, so fresh green beans are not for me right now. But I have had great success with roasting them first, and then freezing them.

                2. j
                  jvanderh RE: frogmountain Feb 9, 2011 11:54 AM

                  This old thread says it will work:


                  and a comment on this one:

                  but I haven't tried myself.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jvanderh
                    frogmountain RE: jvanderh Feb 10, 2011 05:08 AM

                    I chickened out. I defrosted the cauliflower, chopped it up and put it in a potato-cheese casserole instead. Maybe next time, I'll try the roasting.

                    1. re: frogmountain
                      scubadoo97 RE: frogmountain Feb 10, 2011 08:51 AM

                      If you do, try squeezing as much liquid as you can out of the cauliflower after it has defrosted.

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