Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Romesco

Photo: Craig Lee for the New York Times

Photo: Craig Lee for the New York Times

4 servings

1 hour 45 minutes


3 red bell peppers
1 medium to large
1 ⁄ 4 cup olive oil, plus more
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup Marcona almonds
1 small garlic clove, peeled
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar


1. Fill a large pot two-thirds full with water and set to boil; turn on the broiler, and put the rack about 4 inches from the heat source. Put the peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet and broil, turning as each side browns, until they have darkened and collapsed, 15 to 20 minutes. Wrap the peppers in the same foil that lined the pan; when they are cool enough to handle, remove the skins, seeds, and stems (this is easiest under running water).

2. Heat the oven to 450°F. Remove any leaves from the cauliflower. When the water boils, salt it generously. Submerge the cauliflower in the water, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook until you can easily insert a knife into the center, 15 minutes or more. Don’t overcook.

3. Using two spoons or a shallow strainer, transfer the cauliflower to a rimmed baking sheet and pat dry with paper towels. Drizzle all over with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and roast until nicely browned all over, 40 to 50 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, combine the roasted red peppers, the almonds, garlic, vinegar, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper in a standing food processor. Turn the machine on and stream in 1 ⁄ 4 cup olive oil; purée into a thick paste. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

5When the cauliflower is browned, transfer it to a serving platter. Cut the cauliflower into slices or wedges, and serve the sauce on the side for dipping.

Recipe from Mark Bittman’s Kitchen Matrix