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Huge Cauliflower - now what?

My husband brought a huge cauliflower, the size of a pumpkin, home from the market. I had just finished a cauliflower - soup, cooked with peppers, etc. I need some new ideas - lots of them. Thanks.

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  1. Pureed with butter & cream on its own..... or with the addition of potatoes or turnips for a blend

    I also like to do a roasted Asian Style with soy sauce and garlic......makes for a great snack right out of the fridge.

    1. I roast thinely sliced, brusheded with olive oil and sprinkled with salt, cumin and cayenne in hot - 450F - oven. It caramelizes and tastes delicious.

      1 Reply
      1. re: herby

        I've read in the past, if you slice it a half to one inch....you can grill it like a steak.

      2. Questions:
        Will definitely try the roasted - have done something similar in past. How long do you roast it? On Asian, do you toss it with soy sauce and garlic and roast or do you add it to already roasted?
        On the pureed, do you just cook it like potatoes to be mashed?
        Do you grill it on an outside grill? Would it be tender if you cooked it so quickly?

        Thanks for the ideas.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Bethcooks

          Roast until fork tender - about 30 min.

          1. re: Bethcooks

            on the mashed - boil or steam until soft, then mash like mashed potatoes, with butter, cream and/or milk and/or broth, and i like adding grated parm too.

            last week i parboiled florets, then rolled them in a coffee/cumin rub - you can make up any rub, but this one was pre-made - espresso powder, cumin, garlic powder, other spices - and then drizzle the whole thing with olive oil, roast in oven at 375 degrees for maybe 20 mins.

            or, parboil, chop cauliflower florets into little bits, saute in butter and add capers, slivered garlic, pine nuts, a little chopped up anchovy, finely chopped italian parsley and then make some garlic breadcrumbs to strew over the top. a good contrast would be to throw in some dried cherries or currants.

            1. Interesting solutions to my huge cauliflower. I have not heard of a coffee/cumin rub?? Am going to Penzeys website as soon as I post this. Thanks herby and mariacarmen for additional directions.

              1. I do a Roasted Cauliflower and Leek Kugel/Stuffing/Casserole (name changes based upon season/event/venue) -- Roasted cauliflower, leeks sauteed with garlic, deglazed with a little vermouth, mixed with eggs, almond meal, thyme and parsley, and salt and black pepper. Spread in rectangular pan, sprinkled with more fresh herbs mixed with ground pumpkin seeds (just the inner green actual seeds). Baked at 350.

                I also do a cauliflower puree whip -- little veggie broth, little cream cheese, cooked/caramelized onions, roasted garlic, salt, pepper, often pipe on top of salmon croquettes (mini ones for hors d'oeuvres made with salmon, cooked diced onions, egg, almond, meal, chopped parsley, salt and pepper, and cooked in small bites, baked or pan) then sprinkled with dill

                I do a creamy (creamless tho since i use almond milk) roasted cauliflower thyme soup that i often do side by side with a more colorful soup in a bowl

                I'll add it to gnocchi or ravioli fillings or even burrito/quesadilla fillings

                5 Replies
                1. re: Emme

                  Great idea as I also have a lot of leeks. How long do you bake it?

                  1. re: Bethcooks

                    Just pulled up my "loose" recipe...

                    6 whole Leeks, cut off deep green parts
                    2 heads Caulifower
                    5 cloves Garlic, sliced
                    ⅛ cup Vermouth
                    Dash of Lemon Juice, optional
                    4-5 whole Eggs (sometimes I do a portion of whites only)
                    ¼ cup Almond Meal, or more or less to taste
                    ½ cup Thyme, Fresh
                    ½ cup Parsley, Fresh
                    ⅛ -1/4 cup Ground Pumpkin Seeds
                    Salt & Pepper

                    1. Steam or Roast cauliflower til soft.
                    2. Slice leeks thinly; place in saute pan with Pam, and a little salt and pepper.
                    3. After 4-5 minutes, or when leeks almost appear translucent and cooked, add the garlic slices. Cook until garlic is tender and leeks are translucent.
                    4. Deglaze the pan with vermouth (and optional lemon juice).
                    5. Mix in cauliflower.
                    6. Beat together eggs and herbs, reserving 1/8 cup of each herb, or if you want to use it all, make some more for the topping. Mix into cauliflower mixture, and measure in almond meal, 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture doesn't seem runny.
                    7. Preheat oven to 350.
                    8. Turn mixture into 2 - 9x 13x 2" pans, and sprinkle the top with crushed pumpkin seeds combined with thyme and parsley.
                    9. Bake for 20-40 minutes (I know this is a big window, but I just can't seem to remember how long I did it last time...) til set and top is golden.

                    Hope that helps! ...To me it tastes just like stuffing, and people never believe there's no bread in it at all...

                    1. re: Emme

                      Thank you - am making this tomorrow.

                    2. re: Bethcooks

                      I have a similar recipe that was (is) a Passover recipe, but doesn't have to be.

                      Cauliflower-Leek Kugel with Almond-Herb Crust

                      http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      I break into florets, toss in a bowl with olive oil, sprinkle salt, and roast at 450F for about 25 minutes.
                      Good hot as a side, or cold as a snack.

                      Or try these:

                      http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001...

                      http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.co...

                      This also excellent but you need the lemon oil:

                      http://www.nysfair.org/uploads/files/...

                    2. We made the recipe for crispy cauliflower with capers, raisins, and breadcrumbs tonight out of this month's issue of BA for a side tonight. We DEVOURED it....my husband and I would have been happy just to eat this as a main dish. Delicious and highly, highly recommend.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: mountaincachers

                        this is what I was going to suggest! It's also great roasted with chunky tomatoes, onions, capers, and olives. Roasted with garlic, sliced thinly and roasted til brown, made into a sort of mock potato salad (not exactly season appropriate, but I love it in all seasons),

                      2. Make a white sauce with the ratio 1 qt milk: 1/2 cup flour and 1 stick (4 oz) butter, plus salt to taste. When it's done, dump in a package of shredded sharp cheddar cheese and let it melt. Break your cooked cauliflower into chunks. Add to sauce. Brown in oven. This also freezes. You can't have too much Cauliflower au Gratin.

                        1. Cauliflower Pizza
                          Your best crust
                          Base sauce: cream maybe with cream cheese, garlic salt, dill weed (or a good ranch dressing)
                          Top: cauliflower florets (small slices) + grated cheddar and if you have them grated parmesean and grated provolone. (the cheese component can be small- the white sauce will hold it together.)

                          Really good when the crust is whole wheat and the cheddar very sharp

                          1. Cut into large horizontal slices (I like to think of these as cauliflower steaks), blanch and brown in either beurre noir or brown butter.

                            1. Pasta! I love cauliflower.

                              SF restauranteur Peggy Knickerbocker has the easiest recipe: boil pasta and cauliflower florettes in the same pot, drain, douse with good olive oil, top with good cheese. Even this devout meateater loves this easy pasta.

                              1. Pickle it! Eat it cold and crunchy for a change.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: pdxgastro

                                  Ooh. That sounds good. Any instructions?

                                2. I've had a mad craving for Indian lately so my first thought was Aloo Gobi. Yum!

                                  1. I love a man who shows up with vegetables. I second (or third or fifth) roasting. You can turn the oven down to 250 after you get it the right color, and it will shrink.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: jvanderh

                                      Hi Jvanderh,
                                      So after it roasts you turn the temp down and then roast it more until it shrinks? For how long? Caramelized and shrunk cauliflower sounds really good. TIA

                                      1. re: EM23

                                        Yep. It's pretty flexible. Maybe 2-8 hours and check on it every hour or so.

                                        1. re: jvanderh

                                          Got it - you are roasting the whole head then. I am going to try this soon. Thanks!

                                          1. re: EM23

                                            Whole or cut up, whatever floats your boat.

                                    2. blanched cauliflower, which is then breaded in parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, and parsley and fried in olive oil can then be made into a pasta sauce with chicken broth and onions. so good with linguine.