This is SO easy and SO delicious, I wonder why it took me this long to tackle. I have a few versions of roasted cauliflower, one that involves par-boiling first, but this one is even easier. Simply separate a head of cauliflower into roughly equal sized florets, toss with olive oil, salt and pepper and parmesan cheese and roast in a hot 400 F oven, turning pieces every 15 minutes or so, until deeply and evenly browned and tender, about 40 minutes. The sweetness of the veg sings out like never before, dispelling any memories of sulphurous odours linked to the cauliflower. Vegans may wish to omit the cheese. The dish is still fabulous without it. Expect crisp and toasty nuggets of succulent vegetable. You may play with some flavour options here: a bit of curry powder in the mix would be nice, as would a squirt of lemon juice or the inclusion of thickly cut onion wedges from a sweet onion like Walla Walla or Vidalia.
Of course you could eat the roasted cauliflower as is, but I have an enhanced flavour-packed treatment for these tender, golden vegetables you will want to try. Roast your cauliflower florets to your liking and set aside in a mixing bowl. Take a can of anchovies in olive oil and spill the oil into a saute pan. Mince the anchovies and place them in the pan with the oil. Add in 2-3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped, a large pinch of pepperoncini (hot pepper flakes) and 2 tablespoons of minced capers. Cook the mixture over medium heat until the garlic is golden and the anchovies have melted down to a moist paste. This should take about 4-5 minutes. Be careful the garlic doesn't get too dark, as it could easily scorch and turn bitter. Scrape this fragrant mixture onto your cauliflower florets and toss to coat everything well. Season to taste with salt and fresh cracked pepper. I like to add some green to this mix in the form of fresh chopped Italian parsley which adds jolts of herbal joy and marries well with the garlic/anchovy/caper elements in the dish. Serve immediately. This gutsy, lusty vegetable creation pairs nicely with other Mediterranean offerings, including tomato-centric pastas, grilled fish, or savoury meat pies.
You need never be bored by the humble cauliflower. Roast it!