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Pan-Roasted Cauliflower with Tomato Chutney
45 minutes 15 minutes active
Cauliflower becomes remarkably delicious when charred, the deep caramelization adding complexity and nutty, bittersweet flavors. Instead of roasting cauliflower florets (that require a fair amount of knifework) or steaks (that incur waste), we cleave the head into wedges, creating ample surface area on the cut sides for browning. We sear the wedges in a skillet on the stovetop, then slip the pan into a hot oven to finish cooking the cauliflower without risk of scorching. And to make a simple embellishment, we roast a tomato in the same skillet as the cauliflower, then make a tangy-sweet chutney by mashing it with fresh ginger, chilies and cloves. Asafoetida is an optional ingredient in the chutney. Ground from the resin of a plant related to celery, asafoetida has a strong, rather off-putting sulfurous aroma but a complex, inimitable flavor with hints of allium. Look for it in Indian grocery stores.
tablespoons grapeseed or other neutral oil
pound head cauliflower, trimmed and cut into 6 wedges