Having bought a cauliflower when the family were due for the Christmas period it was yet to be used. Fortunately Cauliflower stays fresh in the refrigerator reasonably well, but it had to be used. Therefore it was time to experiment with the latest incarnation of cauliflower in an anchovy based sauce.
As it was snowing really hard ( I’m not in the UK, but incarcerated in the French Alps, having beaten Macrons ban on Les Brittaniques). The family, many who had also made it here, beating the ban by a few hours had now left and so it was time for the Choux Fleur, to be cooked.
I’m not sure if this is true or not, having only looked in 2 Supermarkets. Carrefour, here on the Route des Grands Alps, and Super U, 30 minutes drive DOWN the Route des Grands Alps, BUT little tins of anchovies ( the little flat ones with rounded corners) are impossible to find ! Willowy brunette found before she left a jar of anchovies at vast expense €4.50, but tiny tins, absolutely nowhere to be found.
However, I already had a couple of tins in the store cupboard and so it was to be a vegetable ( not vegetarian) dinner . I’ve come up with a couple of alternatives to my original post, one is really quick making use of the microwave to cook the cauliflower and the other, part use of the microwave and then an oven. I think on balance the combination version gives a better result, but both work and the microwave version, if you are short of time!
- Using a whole cauliflower
- A drizzle of olive oil
- A medium sized onion ( white or yellow but not red) chopped
- At least 3 cloves garlic squeezed or chopped
- Some chilli flakes, to taste
- A tin of anchovies
- Tin of chopped tomatoes
- 50 mls stock, I use quiet simply a stock cube or,powder usually a vegetable based one.
- Sprinkle of parmesan cheese
- 100 mls double cream
- Heat the oven to 180C ( fan), 200 C non fan, #6 gas
- Re move the leaves from the cauliflower, rinse under running water, shake off excess and either boil for about 5 minutes or place in a dish, cover with cling film and microwave for about 3 minutes. It should not be cooked through .
- Put into an ovenproof dish and drizzle with the oil and bake for about 30 minutes.
- Add some oil to a saucepan, add the onions, garlic andc chilli flakes, sauté gently so that they do not brown or worse still burn. Add the anchovies and stir well, they will seem to dissolve . Add the tomatoes and stock. I prefer a smooth sauce so at this point I blitz the sauce with a hand blender .
- Taste and season according to taste.
- Pour the sauce over the cauliflower,
- Sprinkle on the parmesan cheese and pop under a grill just to melt and colour.
- Serve at once, but will also reheat very well in a microwave.