I don’t particularly love cauliflower. I’m not exactly one of those people who go to the grocery store and have a cauliflower on their list below the eggplants, tomatoes and other pantry staples. However this dish is so flavourful and tasty, I happily devour it as a main course once a week. Plus it’s healthy and vegan.
I like to roast the cauliflower vs boiling or steaming it. I think the high heat caramelizes the sugars and adds so much flavour to this otherwise boring vegetable (apologies to cauli-lovers). The tomatoes add sweetness and as the cauliflower roasts it gets this wonderful red colour. But I particularly love the olives in this dish. As they roast their taste intensifies. Some of them actually burst because of the heat and add a huge splash of flavour in this dish.
Serve it plain, with rice or even pasta. Serve it as a main course or a side dish to grilled meats or fish. It’s great!
- 1 large cauliflower (about 1-1,2 kg), cut into florets about the same size.
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- ½ cup white wine
- 400 grams canned crushed tomatoes
- 1 Tbs balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp sugar
- 1½ Tbs tomato paste
- 1/4 cup vegetable stock or water
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp fresh thyme
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
- ½ cup black kalamata olives
- about 1/4 cup chopped parsley to garnish
Preheat oven to 200 C, fan.
Put the olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook a couple of minutes until soft. Add the garlic and cook, stirring often until fragrant.
Add the wine and let it evaporate for a minute or so. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, stock or water, vinegar, sugar, oregano, thyme, salt and pepper. Heat through and add the cherry tomatoes and cauliflower florets. Mix everything together and take off the heat.
Transfer the whole content of the pot in a baking pan. Scatter the olives all over. Roast in the preheated oven for 55-60 minutes until cauliflower is cooked through. Check it after 30 minutes of roasting. If you see some pieces too charred, then turn them over. Do not cover the pan otherwise cauliflower will steam and not roast.
Garnish with parsley and serve warm or at room temperature. Frankly, it tastes great straight out of the fridge.