I like to roast cauliflower instead of boiling it, because I think it enhances the flavor rather than boiling some of it out. However, I don’t like to just roast it raw, because I think the texture is tough and rubbery (I feel the same way about broccoli). Instead, I blanche or lightly steam before roasting.
To prepare the cauliflower florets without breaking the cauliflower up into small pieces, start from the bottom first: turn the cauliflower head upside-down and cut around the core at a 45-degree angle to release the core; discard. Peel back remaining leaves and discard. Carefully break each floret off the head one at a time.
Blanching: fill a large pot about 1/2 full of water and bring to a roaring boil. Add 1 tablespoon of salt, and drop whole florets into the salted boiling water for about 2 minutes. Drain and allow the florets to cool down enough so that you can handle them.
Steaming: place florets into a steamer basket and steam for about 5 minutes. Remove and allow the florets to cool down enough so that you can handle them.
To prepare for roasting, for larger florets, cut through the root of the stem and then break apart by hand. Do not cut through the top of the florets or else they will break off small pieces.
Preheat oven to 450
Don’t over-crowd the sheet pan(s) or cauliflower will not brown up as nicely. Use 1 sheet pan per each head of cauliflower.
Drizzle liberally with olive oil, salt & pepper and toss to coat each piece well on all sides. Arrange pieces evenly so there is even space in between pieces.
Roast for 20 minutes until browned on the edges.
As a meat substitute in many recipes or salads.
Cauliflower salad – put browned cauliflower on a bed of greens, top with katamala and/or green olives, add nuts (if desired) and a vinaigrette or pesto dressing.
Buffalo cauliflower – drizzle browned cauliflower with prepared buffalo sauce and toss to coat – right on the sheet pan. Serve as a side dish or low-carb alternative to your game-day snacks with bleu cheese dressing.