Monday, March 3, 2014

Pasta with Cauliflower Sauce, Caramelized Onions & Roasted Vegetables

Pasta with Cauliflower Sauce, Caramelized Onions & Roasted Vegetables
Woke up to more snow today, I guess this season is making up for lack of snow last year. Honesty, snow is beautiful at first fall then it melts and reveals trash left behind at least here in the city. However, my place in the country is serene and gorgeous from first fall to melt, yet this year it’s a skating ring in my front/back yard and driveway, which makes it difficult to spend time there. It snowed, then rained and snowed again so the grounds are solid. I’ve been spending most of winter in the city, which breaks my heart. I just love the peaceful country.
Fortunately, I’ll be heading to the warmer climate of Santa Barbara next weekend, my home away from home; it’s been 3 years since I’ve been back or traveled anywhere and am excited to visit. I plan on spending time with good friends, hiking trails, walking the beach, visiting the family avocado grove that sits between the ocean and St. Ynez mountains, eating good food and taking pics. It will be a very short trip but excited nonetheless.

On to the recipe… I craved pasta last week and never tire of a spicy red sauce with mushrooms but this time I wanted something creamy and low fat, pureed cauliflower made the perfect sauce, but that wasn’t enough, I wanted more to the dish so I caramelized some onions, which adds a rich flavor and roasted broccoli rabe and cauliflower florets. I think it takes the pasta dish up a notch, adding additional flavor and texture.  This pasta is best enjoyed right when it’s made and served hot.

1 large head of cauliflower cut into pieces
2 cups veggie broth not hot
1 large onion sliced thin
Coconut oil
2 cloves garlic minced
Black pepper
Red pepper flakes
Fresh parsley
Sea salt to taste
Pasta or brown rice pasta for gluten free

Optional broccoli or broccoli rabe roasted

Set aside a few cauliflower florets and roast at 400 degrees with coconut oil and sea salt, broccoli or broccoli rabe would be great too.

Steam the cauliflower until for tender. When done place in bowl and set aside.

Sauté the onions in coconut oil, black pepper and sea salt on medium to low heat for 10 or more minutes to golden brown. When done transfer to bowl and set aside. Add the minced garlic and sizzle for 1 minute but don’t let it brown, remove from the heat.

Add 1-cup broth, the garlic, sea salt and some of the cauliflower - a little bit at a time to a blender - keep adding more cauliflower until it’s all pureed and adding broth as needed.  The consistency should be thick. I used 2 cups of veggie broth for a large head of cauliflower. Transfer the pureed cauliflower to a medium pot and bring up the heat, add a pinch of red pepper flakes. Taste for seasoning -add more salt if needed

Meanwhile cook the pasta al dente.

Add pasta to a bowl, spoon plenty of cauliflower sauce and top with caramelized onions, roasted cauliflower and fresh parsley.
This is best enjoyed the day it’s made.

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