Serious Eats: Recipes

The Crisper Whisperer: Andrew Carmellini's Cauliflower

If this recipe for Cauliflower with Brown Butter, Pear, Sage, and Hazelnuts sounds familiar, maybe it's because you've seen or even bought chef Andrew Carmellini and wife Gwen Hyman's beautiful book Urban Italian: Simple Recipes and True Stories from a Life in Food. Or maybe you're a long-time reader of Fine Cooking and remember it from the September 2008 issue, where it was doubled for presentation as a Thanksgiving side dish. That's where I first learned about it.

Maybe you remember the link from our own Thanksgiving roundup of cruciferous sides. But it's also possible that you know about this recipe simply because you've been somewhere in my general vicinity at some brief moment since last November. Goodness knows I haven't stopped talking about it since I first sank my teeth into a bite.

There's no question this side-dish is special enough for a holiday table, but the best part is that it's also simple and quick enough to include in a regular dinner, any night of the week. There probably won't be leftovers, but if there are, they are quite versatile. You can even bake them together with some al dente short pasta, ricotta, and fresh mozzarella to breathe a whole new life into what's left of them. Cauliflower may be brainy food, but no one will be the wiser.

Adapted from Urban Italian: Simple Recipes and True Stories from a Life in Food via Fine Cooking.

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