Cauliflower is such a versatile vegetable. Here it is used two ways, as a crumbed fillet, and as a creamy topping. My guests had to ask, what is this?
The taste, texture, and mouthfeel of the crumbed and fried fillet of cauliflower was so different to the creamy ricotta, roast garlic, and cauliflower puree. It wasn’t immediately obvious the main ingredient in both was cauliflower. Perhaps the beautiful green of the parsley oil may have been a bit of a distraction.
My recipes tend to use a lot of garlic. Perhaps my taste for garlic is one of the reasons I love Vietnamese food, in which garlic is used a lot. Garlic can be a rather dominant ingredient if used raw, but if roasted first, it becomes a sweet umami flavour enhancer. Did I mention that it is good for you?
Crumbed cauliflower topped with a cauliflower ricotta garlic puree and parsley oil
Crumbed cauliflower and puree
- 2 medium heads cauliflower
- 1 head roasted garlic
- 1/2 cup cornflour
- 2 eggs lightly whisked
- 1/2 cup fine breadcrumbs I used quinoa crumbs, or blend some panko crumbs
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 10 g butter
- 2 Tbsp truffle oil optional, replace with olive or or more butter
- 250 g ricotta cheese
- 1/2 tsp Tabasco sauce
- Olive oil for frying
- 2 bunches of parsley
- 1 pot of boiling water
- 1 bowl of ice water
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil use a very good olive oil for this
- 1 or 2 coffee filters
- Blanch the parsley in boiling salted water for 15 seconds.
- Plunge the blanched parsley into an ice water to cool.
- Blend the blanched parsley and olive oil until smooth.
- Place a coffee filter(s) over a strainer and bowl. Strain the blended mixture overnight.
- Prepare roasted garlic per these instructions.
- Trim the leaves and lower stalk from the cauliflowers.
- Cut the head lengthways, then cut a slab of cauliflower about 15 mm thick from each half. Repeat with the other cauliflower so you have 4 slabs.
- Reserve the slabs to be crumbed.
- Chop up the remains of the cauliflower into small pieces.
- Boil the cauliflower pieces until soft. About 15 minutes. Drain well.
- Squeeze the roasted garlic cloves from the roasted head into a bowl.
- Add the boiled cauliflower, truffle oil, butter, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper, to a blender and blend until smooth. A hand blender works too.
- Stir the ricotta into the blended cauliflower.
- Put the cornflour in one bowl.
- Put the whisked eggs in another bowl.
- Put the fine bread crumbs/quinoa crumbs, black pepper, and paprika in a third bowl.
- Dip each cauliflower slab in cornflour and shake off excess.
- Dip each cauliflower slab in in the whisked egg.
- Dip each cauliflower slab in the fine bread crumb/quinoa crumb mixture and shake off the excess.
- Bring the 1 Tbsp olive oil to a medium heat in a heavy pan or skillet.
- Sear a cauliflower slab until golden, then flip over, searing the other side until golden as well.
- Add more oil if necessary and do the same for the other cauliflower slabs.
- Lay a crumbed cauliflower slab on a plate.
- Spoon over the cauliflower ricotta roasted garlic topping.
- Drizzle with parsley oil.