I must be reverting to some sort of baby food phase, because lately I’ve been really into puréed veggies. I think it’s the idea of eating familiar foods in unfamiliar ways. Either way you look at it, this cauliflower purée recipe isn’t the most innovative recipe I’ve created, but it serves an excellent purpose as an easy and mild-tasting accompaniment to robust dishes (which you’ll see in a couple upcoming recipes!).
It’s unsurprising that cauliflower is a close relative to broccoli, but until recently I wasn’t aware that it is from the same family (Brassica oleracea) as cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale, and collard greens. It was first brought to mainstream attention by some French cookbooks in the 17th century, although the plant itself originally came from Genoa, Italy.
1 head cauliflower, washed
1 head garlic, roasted (see note below)
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
1/4 tsp each fresh rosemary and thyme, minced
This is a relatively quick recipe, except for roasting the garlic, which takes about 45 minutes. To do so, pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees, cut the first 1/5 off the head of garlic, drizzle with about 1 tsp olive oil, then loosely wrap in tin foil. Bake for 45 minutes or the cloves start to turn light brown and translucent. Let the garlic cool for a few minutes then grasp the bottom of the head of garlic and squeeze the garlic through the openings you cut earlier. Here is a quick video if my instructions don’t make sense.
If you don’t have the time to roast the garlic, you can still make a pretty tasty purée without it – simply omit the roasted garlic and you’ll be ready to eat in about 15 minutes!
Coarsely chop your cauliflower and place in a pot. Pour the chicken broth in with it. Bring to a boil on high heat, then cover and reduce the head to med/low.
Steam the cauliflower until soft, about 10-15 minutes.
Strain the cauliflower, retaining the chicken broth you used to steam it.
In a food processor, combine the cauliflower with the remaining ingredients, minus the chicken broth.
Process the cauliflower until smooth, adding some of the retained chicken broth if needed, until smooth. You may need to scrape down the sides of the processor to make sure everything gets evenly mushed.
Generally, a purée is thinner in consistency than mashed potatoes or mashed cauliflower, but it’s up to you how thick you’d like it – just keep adding chicken broth until you’re happy with the consistency. Serve immediately, or chill for later.