This is a wonderful recipe with very few items that deliver a full punch of flavor. I had a head of cauliflower in the house, some capers , garlic, pasta and parmesan cheese. All the ingredients for this delicious pasta dish. It would have been delicious with some added pignoli nuts but I didn’t have any. Next time I’ll be better prepared. In any event this is what I did and while it’s not the most low in calories it’s high in flavor! Just delicious and the really good news is that Joel now loves cauliflower which is nothing short of a miracle . He ate this pasta with gusto and gave it a big thumbs up!
Perfect meatless meal for those of you who are vegetarians.
*this was for the 2 of us with a little left over will probably feed 3 perfectly -you can double up easily!
1/2 head of cauliflower –cut into small bite-sized florets
3 Tablespoons drained-capers–if you hate capers you can omit — I wouldn’t because they add a lot of flavor and zest but if you hate them just omit
1/4 cup plus 1 Tablespoon extra virgin Olive Oil
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt plus more as needed– I didn’t need extra
Freshly ground Black Pepper to taste
2 medium garlic cloves, grated or minced well
Finely grated lemon zest of 1 lemon
Fresh Lemon Juice of the 1 lemon you just zested
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter softened at room temperature
3 Tablespoons grated Parmesan Cheese plus more if you’d like at the table
8 oz. Fusilli Pasta or any other macaroni that you’d like to use–I just like Fusilli because it grabs on to the sauce well
*1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted in oven for about 3-4 minutes –I didn’t have in the house but this would add a delicious layer of crunch
Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees
In a bowl, toss the cauliflower and 2 Tablespoons of the drained capers with the 1/4 cup of olive oil , 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt and a few grinds of the pepper mill. Spread the mixture out in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet and roast it, tossing it occasionally, until golden brown — app. 30 minutes.
Mince the remaining 1 Tablespoon of drained capers and add to minced garlic in a large bowl and add the lemon zest, butter, remaining 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil and I added the 3 Tablespoons of Parmesan Cheese. I mashed it all up together.
Cook Pasta according to directions for al-dente and drain
When the Pasta is cooked and drained add to the bowl along with the roasted cauliflower and pine nuts with the mashed caper mixture. I squeezed in 1/2 the lemon juice to taste. Season with salt and pepper but I didn’t think it needed more because it tasted salty enough for us. Toss well and serve!
Add additional parmesan cheese at the table if you’d like.