The tradition for Dad’s cauliflower started after eating several times at one of our favorite local restaurants. We would always order the cauliflower as an appetizer because it was so good, and unlike any other cauliflower we had tried previously. This cauliflower had flavor, and even a bit of a spicy kick. The texture was spot-on with the al dente crunch of the veggie combined with the additional crunch of the little croutons. Yum!
After enjoying the cauliflower for several meals out, I began to challenge my dad. “You should try to make this at home, Dad!” It took some time, but eventually he gave in and started recreating this dish himself. I sure am glad he did! We’ve been able to enjoy it for a wide range of meals including at holidays and Sunday dinners.
Most recently, we were visiting my dad in California. As always, he was planning on making us dinner. He asked if we would prefer broccoli or cauliflower. Knowing this was the cauliflower recipe he was thinking of, and knowing how much my husband loves it, I of course chose the cauliflower. As Dad was preparing it, I paid close attention, took pictures and notes… Maybe, just maybe, I’ll be able to attempt Dad’s Campo-inspired cauliflower at home myself now. I know that would make the husband happy.
Dad’s Roasted Cauliflower
One head of cauliflower, cut into florets
2 TBSP minced garlic
2 TBSP anchovy paste
3 TBSP parsley
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 tsp crushed red pepper
2 TBSP Calabrian Chiles, minced
3 TBSP lemon juice
1 cup olive oil
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Mix together all of the ingredients except the cauliflower. Let set for at least 30 minutes for the flavors to marry together. Then, toss the cauliflower with the sauce until evenly coated. Place the cauliflower into a large cast iron pan. Roast the cauliflower for about 15 minutes until tender, or cooked to your liking. Remove from the oven and top with either panko breadcrumbs or small plain croutons for some added delicious crunch.
What are your favorite home-cooked, restaurant-inspired meals? Comment below!