Romanesco Cauliflower: The most loved veggie of all

Look what turned up in the veg box this week!! My better half and I adore these for some reason, which is curious as it’s more prevalent cousin, the bog standard cauliflower, usually gets whizzed up as soup round here.

The whorliness must make a difference.

So in order to extract maximum enjoyment from this patterned perfection we have it with pasta, and I can’t stress enough how delicious a dish this is; you will need (for 4): 1 Romanesco Cauliflower, cut into bite size florets, Olive Oil, 1 tin of Anchovy Fillets in Olive Oil, drained, 3 cloves of Garlic, crushed, 10 finely sliced Button Mushrooms, ½ Red Pepper, sliced, 2 tbsp of chopped Flat Leaf Parsley, Black Pepper, Parmesan, a few Green Olives (optional).

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil for the pasta (Penne or Rigatoni work best) and once you have a boil, add the florets of Romanesco instead and return to the boil. Meanwhile into a large frying pan, over a moderate heat, warm some oil and add the anchovy fillets (minus their own oil) and the crushed garlic and stir round until the anchovies are mush. Transfer the florets from the pasta saucepan with a draining spoon to the frying pan.

Weigh out however much pasta you need and add that to the boiling water left behind by the florets and cook in the usual way.

Back with the frying pan, add the mushrooms and red pepper, sprinkle in the parsley and a grinding of black pepper, stir round, add a splosh of water and either cover with a lid or large plate. Turn the heat down a little. Allow the ‘sauce’ to steam/fry until the pasta is cooked, the florets should still have some bite and there should be the merest hint of liquid in the bottom of the pan. Drain the pasta and toss with the sauce and olives if using. Serve with Parmesan.

Buon Appetito.

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