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Roast Cauliflower with Pasta and Pesto.jpg

This dish works so well with the hearts of palm pasta. The toasted pine nuts add that 'meaty' flavor to the dish.


I love the visual impact of romanesco cauliflower but of course this can be made with any cauliflower. 

The simplest way to make it is with store bought pesto. There are so many good ones out there that if you can find one with good real ingredients go for it.  I have included a recipe which I like which uses boiled garlic instead of the raw. It takes the edge off the garlic and doesn't leave a strong after taste.


  • hearts of palm pasta 

  • pesto sauce (recipe below)

  • 1 - 2 heads of romanesco cauliflower depending on size and for how many

  • olive oil

  • sea salt (I like Maldon's)

  • toasted pine nuts for garnish

  • grated parmesan for garnish (optional)

Pesto ingredients

  • 1/2 cup toasted pine nuts (plus a bit more for garnish)

  • 2-3 garlic cloves

  • 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 cups basil leaves

  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese (finely grated)

  • 1/2 tsp sea salt (or kosher)

  • 1/2 to 1 tsp fresh lemon juice


Boil garlic cloves for a few minutes, let cool then peel. 

Place everything but the oil and lemon juice in blender and emulsify. Add oil gradually. Truthfully, sometimes I just add everything at once. Add lemon juice to taste.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Cut or break cauliflower into florets.  Place on roasting pan. Can use parchment paper if using cookie sheet or sheet pan.


Coat florets generously with olive oil.  Roast for 25 - 30 minutes or until fork tender, edges slightly browned.

Just before the florets are done, place a little of the pesto and a little olive oil in a pan on low/med heat. Toss in the artichoke pasta for about 5 minutes, and continue tossing from time to time.

To serve (only a suggestion), place some pesto on the plate. Arrange cauliflower florets on top.  Place pasta next to it.  Top pasta with more pesto.  Season with some flakes of sea salt, and sprinkle on some toasted pine nuts. Can also grate some parmesan on top.


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