The creator of Chowdown said they first tried this at Arlo Grey in Downtown Austin. As for my experiences with it, wow, what a dish. His recipe called for a jar of cacciatore sauce but we couldn’t find one so ended up making our own. It turned out really well and I look forward to doing it again. We can definitely season the cauliflower more than we did last time, let’s not be shy! Half of a cauliflower head was definitely a lot of food, but I’d say 1 head per 2 people. It’s vegetables that eat like a full-on meat lasagna. Dang.
1 head of cauliflower
1lb mini sweet peppers
1 yellow onion, diced
5oz mild goat cheese (we liked the garlic and herb one from HEB)
5oz sour cream
1 cup red wine
croutons or a toasted baguette
2 8oz cans tomato sauce
3 white mushrooms
1 container cherry tomatoes
1 tablespoon capers
1 tablespoon rosemarry
1 tablespoon celery seeds
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 6oz can tomato paste
1 tablespoon chili powder
4 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
various spices to taste
Start by pickling half your peppers. Chop all your peppers, put half in a jar, cover with vinegar (and whatever you like, spices, garlic, hot sauce). We’re only looking for a quick pickle here, so do this, shake it up, and get back to the rest of the recipe.
Mix together 4 tablespoons of grated parmesan cheese and olive oil together with some italian spices of your choosing in a small ramican to form a paste.
Next, start roasting the cauliflower, around 350°, to your desired level of doneness. To start grab a baking sheet and some aluminum foil. Remove as much of the woody stem as you can and generously apply olive oil and spices. Place the cauliflower in the middle of the baking sheet and apply the parmesan paste to the top of it. Place the baking sheet on the middle rack and just watch it to make sure it doesn’t burn. To toast the top broil for about 5minutes before pulling it out. At 350° you should be able to roast it for an hour no issue.
Time to make the cacciatore sauce, it’s supposed to be hearty so keep that in mind! Empty your tomato sauce and tomato paste into a saucepan on medium low heat. Slice the mushrooms and add them to the saucepan with the capers, garlic, half the cherry tomatoes, and italian seasonings. Add salt and pepper to taste. Let simmer until needed.
While the cauliflower roasts and the sauce simmers, stir the goat cheese and sour cream together. If it’s too thick, thin it out with a bit of olive oil. Celery seeds, rosemary, chili powder, basil, oregeno, and hot sauce are a few good ideas of things to add. Cover and place in fridge when done.
Cook the onion and remaining peppers (non-pickled!) in a high heat pan with some olive oil. When softened, add your cacciatore sauce and a cup of red wine. Stir and bring to a simmer, let it go until it gets a bit thicker.
To assemble, plate a large dollop of our cream cheese spread, place half a cauliflower head on top, cover with a scoop of cacciatore sauce, top with croutons or serve with a baguette, and finally, add cilantro and our pickled peppers to complete the dish.