There is something so lovely about roasting veggies like broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and of course, cauliflower. I love roasting a whole head of cauliflower. A whole roasted head of cauliflower makes the meal feel extra special.
When the TV show, The Chew, was still on ABC, Clinton Kelly prepared a beautiful whole cauliflower. It was inspired by a meal, I believe, he had in Miami. Once the show was no longer on the air, the links to the recipes all disappeared.
If memory serves, the head of cauliflower that had been coated in parmesan cheese and served with a roasted poblano pepper vinaigrette and goat cheese cream. I had tried this recipe once and loved it.
When my husband saw some beautiful cauliflower on the table at the farmers market, he sent me a photo and asked me if I wanted any. I jumped at the chance and told him to grab me a few of them. They were beautiful and small, perfect for individual servings.
I love the smoky flavor or roasted poblano peppers. I find the best way for me to do them is directly on the gas flame of my stove. If you don’t have gas, you can put them under a broiler or on a grill. Once they are nice and charred, I put them in a glass bowl and cover with plastic wrap. This helps steam the peppers. Once cool enough to handle, i peel the burnt skin off. Please, do not run them under water. As tempting as that is to do for ease, it washes the flavor down the sink.
The acid of the red wine vinegar combined with the smokiness of the pepper is heaven. It then cuts through the richness of the goat cheese and parmesan crusted head of cauliflower. Perfection.
In a large saucepan, put in enough water to get to 3/4 full. Add a tablespoon of kosher salt. Put on the stove over high heat and bring to a boil. Submerge the cauliflower and cook for 5 minutes. Remove the cauliflower. Let drain and totally cool. Gently dry with paper towel.
Take poblano peppers and either put over flame to char the skin or under the broiler. When all of the sides of the pepper are blackened, put into a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 30-35 minutes. Peel the skin off of the peppers (do not run under water), remove the stem and seeds and put aside.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place the cooled cauliflower on a lined sheet pan and top with olive oil, salt, pepper. Put into the oven and cook for 30 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine the parmesan cheese with cumin, smoked paprika and ancho chili powder.
In a small bowl mix together the goat cheese, sour cream and heavy cream. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Place the poblanos in a blender. Add the red wine vinegar, shallot, garlic and honey. Puree the mixture and slowly add the oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Remove the cauliflower from the oven and top with parmesan cheese mixture. Put back in the oven for another 5 minutes.
Place the vinaigrette on the plate, then dollop goat cheese mixture around and place the cauliflower on top.
Drizzle some olive oil on top and sprinkle with parsley. Serve family style.