Saturday, February 14, 2015

Roasted romanesco with currants & parmesan

In our last Good Life Organics CSA box (CSA = Community-supported Agriculture, a great way to get local produce delivered to you...check it out in your area!) that we receive at school, there was a beautiful head of romanesco included, and while everyone thought it was pretty amazing to look at, there was some chatter as to what one actually does to prepare this veggie.  Then I also saw big a stack of them at the grocery store and that did it... 
I was officially inspired to share my favorite way to cook this beauty.

Roasting it is so very simple and delicious.  As when you are roasting any vegetable, make sure the veggies are completely dry and are not crowded on the sheet pan before putting them in the oven, otherwise they will steam themselves instead of getting that tasty caramelization on them.  Also make sure your pieces are roughly the same size (in this case 1 1/2 to 2-inches) so they  all finish cooking at the same time.

Romanesco is very similar to cauliflower, so this preparation works equally as well with any variety (white, purple, orange) you may want to try. 

Serves 4, as a side dish

One large head romanesco
2 T. olive oil
1 t. kosher salt & fresh ground pepper

1/4 c. water
2 T. red wine vinegar
2 T. dried zante currants

2 T. fresh grated Parmesan
1 T. balsamic vinegar

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Cut romanesco in half through the stem.  Remove core and separate florets.  If you have any larger florets, cut them into approximately 2 inch pieces.

Toss romanesco with olive oil and place on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and fresh ground pepper.  Place in the oven and roast 15 minutes.

While romanesco is roasting, you can prepare your currants.  Place water, red wine vinegar and currants in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil, turn off heat and let them sit & plump up for about 10 minutes.  Drain off the liquid.

After 15 minutes, flip the romanesco pieces and return to the oven for an additional 5 minutes of roasting.  The pieces will get quite brown & caramelized, but don’t worry - that’s what makes it so delicious!

Remove from oven and immediately toss with Parmesan and balsamic vinegar.  Top with currants and serve.

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