When I tell people that roasted cauliflower has the addictive power of popcorn or potato chips, they typically look at me like I’ve lost my mind. Roasted cauliflower was one of our gateways into cooking whole foods, and back then it seemed ludicrous to use the words addictive and cauliflower in the same sentence. However, roasting this humble vegetable turns it into something entirely different from its raw self: tender, charred, and almost sweet. Here, we’ve combined it with a few spices and a fresh red Fresno chile pepper, which adds a delicate heat. It’s a fantastic side to meat, seafood, or a vegetarian pasta, or as a snack directly from the oven. It’s also the star ingredient in our Roasted Cauliflower and Black Bean Tacos with Chipotle Aïoli.
- Yield: 6 Servings
- 1 large head cauliflower (about 2 pounds)
- 4 medium garlic cloves
- 1 Fresno chile pepper (or ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes)
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 450°F.
- Chop the cauliflower into florets. Peel and mince the garlic. If using, remove the seeds from the Fresno chile pepper and slice or mince it. In a large bowl, mix the cauliflower, garlic, and chile pepper with the olive oil, cumin, paprika, turmeric, kosher salt, and black pepper.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat, then place the cauliflower in a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 25 to 35 minutes until it is tender and browned, stirring once. Serve immediately.