This weeks theme for The Food Network’s #FallFest is cauliflower. Years ago I used to make a recipe quite often that was similar to this Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Parmesan and Cheddar Cheese Frosting. Simply called ‘frosted cauliflower’ it was steamed cauliflower with a simple mixture of cheese and mayonnaise spread over it before sticking it in the oven to bake just enough to melt the cheese.
I believe I thought the cheesy part would help me get my two girls to eat this veggie and doggone if it didn’t work! Like many recipes made oh so many years ago, it fell by the wayside and it was while perusing one of the many Bon Appetit magazines from a stack I have yet to get throug that I noticed an updated version of that old classic.
I loved their method of braising the cauliflower in a seasoned liquid on the stove; I can assure you that even without the sauce, this veggie cooked in wine and herbs was much tastier than my previous method of plain steaming. I thought the influence of red pepper flakes a bit too much though so I’ve reduced them a bit…want more heat; go for it!
Still, I decided to go with a version of the sauce I remember. The goat cheese mixture served on the side in the Bon Appetit recipe sounds wonderful and I will try it but you know how sometimes something hits you and NOTHING else will do? That’s what happened to me and doggone it, a cheese sauce frosted on the head of cauliflower was what it had to be! I’ve updated some of the components mostly because, well, I could eat whole grain mustard with a spoon and the addition of Parmesan made a sauce more to my liking today.
The end result was simply fabulous. Much prettier than I remember and tasty enough I could have eaten it all alone for dinner. Lucky for me I had some of my favorite chicken leftover in the fridge; an entire meal was made with just the chicken and Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Parmesan and Cheddar Cheese Frosting and it was SO good.
Do you remember Frosted Cauliflower or am I dreaming?
Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Cheese Sauce
- ½ cup dry white wine
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup kosher salt
- 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 1 bay leaf
- 8 cups water
- 1 head of cauliflower leaves and thickest part of core removed being careful to keep it intact.
For the Sauce:
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- ¼ cup sharp cheddar cheese
- 2 tsp whole grain mustard
- 2 Tbsp chopped green onion
- Pepper to taste
- Parsley for Garnish (optional}
- Bring wine, oil, kosher salt, juice, butter, red pepper flakes, sugar, bay leaf, and 8 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Add whole cauliflower, reduce heat and simmer, turning occasionally, until a knife easily inserts into center, 15-20 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 475 degrees.
- Remove cauliflower from pot using 1 or 2 slotted spoons, drain and transfer the cauliflower to a rimmed baking sheet. Roast, rotating sheet halfway through, until brown all over, 30-40 minutes.
To Make the Sauce:
- Reduce the oven to 375 degrees.
- Mix all of the ingredients together in a small bowl and 'frost' the top and sides of the cauliflower. Return to the oven for about 5-7 minutes or just until the cheese has started to melt. Garnish with chopped parsley if desired.
- To serve, cut into slices.
Enjoy some of the other creative cauliflower dishes from my Food Network friends!
- Hey Grill Hey: Grilled Cauliflower Steaks with Burst Tomato Salad
- Devour: 4 Sneaky Ways to Replace Carbs with Cauliflower
- The Wimpy Vegetarian: Curried Cauliflower “Risotto” with Apples
- Taste with the Eyes: Not Your Average Crudités Platter
- Healthy Eats: All the Ways to Eat Cauliflower
- In Jennie’s Kitchen: Turmeric & Ginger Roasted Cauliflower
- The Mom 100: Sauteed and Braised Cauliflower with Mustard Seeds and Green Peppercorns
- Swing Eats: Cauliflower Fritters With Cheese, Jalapeño And Cilantro (Gluten-Free)
- The Lemon Bowl: Za’atar Crusted Cauliflower Steaks
- Creative Culinary: Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Parmesan and Cheddar Cheese Frosting (You’re Here!)
- FN Dish: 7 Cauliflower Recipes That Aren’t Quite What They Seem