The Hearty Vegetable


Serves 3-4

-1 head cauliflower
-3 large cloves garlic, sliced
-8 oz. white mushrooms, brushed clean, stems removed and sliced
-14.5 oz. can of fire roasted, diced tomatoes
-¼ tsp. dried basil
-¼ tsp. dried oregano
-¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
-2 oz. Parmesan cheese plus more for serving, finely shredded
-Small bunch chives, finely sliced
-½ lb. dry pasta
-Salt and pepper
-Extra virgin olive oil
A short, stubby pasta shape, like cavatappi or rigatoni, works well for this recipe.
-Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
-Remove the leaves and core from the cauliflower, and chop into florets.
-Put cauliflower onto a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with about 1 Tbs. olive oil, a pinch of salt, and toss to coat. Turn cauliflower so the cut sides are down, and roast for about 20 minutes. Remove from oven, scrape, turn and push cauliflower together. Roast in oven until lightly browned and fork tender, about 5-10 minutes more.
-Boil pasta in salted water.
-Meanwhile, heat 1 tsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
-Add garlic, mushrooms and a pinch of salt to the skillet and stir. Add tomatoes and stir. Add dried basil, dried oregano, and crushed red pepper flakes, and cook, stirring occasionally.
-When pasta is almost al dente, reserve 1-cup pasta cooking water and drain pasta.
-Stir pasta into the tomato mixture. Add some of the pasta cooking water and continue to cook over medium-low heat until sauce is thickened and pasta is al dente.
-Stir roasted cauliflower into the pasta and add salt and pepper to taste.
-Remove from heat and stir in the Parmesan cheese.
-Serve topped with more Parmesan cheese and a generous sprinkle of chives.