Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Creamy Dijon Sauce
Whole Roasted Cauliflower, aka the BEST cauliflower ever. Smothered with a creamy dijon sauce, you’re never going to look at cauliflower the same.
You guys, this is literally THE BEST CAULIFLOWER I have ever made or eaten. That sounds like a bold claim, but I’m telling ya, it’s true.
A couple of months ago, I went to Napa Valley for the Food and Culinary Professionals Workshop with Rachel Cooks’ partner Milk Means More. In addition to learning how cheese is made, we also attended a couple of sessions on up and coming food trends. I found these fascinating and I can’t wait to share lots of recipes within these food trends. I’m not always the quickest person to adopt fashion trends (okay, probably one of the slowest), BUT when we’re talking about food, it’s an entirely different story. Especially when one of the trends is vegetable-centric recipes.
Vegetables and I go way back and we’re pretty tight. I’m all about making them the star of the show and could easily make a meal out of a pan of roasted vegetables with a sprinkle of feta and a drizzle of something delicious like honey mustard vinaigrette or a homemade pesto. When I heard that this is an actual trend, my ears perked up. We’re talking about meals and menu items that place a vegetable or vegetables as the STAR of the show, and then use meat as an accent – a sprinkle of bacon or a crumble of chorizo. Restaurant menus are putting a “vegetable” category front and center on their menu instead of a small font “sides” list at the bottom of the menu. I, for one, am very excited about this.
I took this as inspiration for this recipe. The vegetable is definitely the star here, and I could easily make a meal out of this alone. If you haven’t tried roasting a whole cauliflower, I’m going to insist that you do. Your house will smell like cauliflower big time, but diffuse some essential oils and deal with it, because it’s so worth it!
The outside of the head of cauliflower gets irresistibly crispy and then the inside is soft and practically melts in your mouth. I’m craving it, just from writing about it.
And let’s talk about the sauce, which might I add, is mandatory. Sorry, apparently I’m a bit bossy when it comes to this recipe. (It’s just so good!)
This sauce. It may not be the prettiest thing, but the creaminess of the butter and cream with the sharp flavor of the Dijon mustard is something dreams are made of. But hey, if that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, try a pesto like this fun arugula pesto, or a romesco sauce.
Have I convinced you yet?
Did I tell you I ate HALF of this whole roasted cauliflower in one sitting? I’m not even the slightest bit embarrassed because I know once you try it, you’ll do the exact same thing.
Love the idea of veggie-centric recipes as much as I do? Try these:
For the Cauliflower:
- 1 whole cauliflower head (about 2 pounds)
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons coarse ground Dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon dried or fresh chopped chives
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Preheat oven to 375°F. Wash cauliflower head and pat dry. Trim away leaves and thick woody part of stem, being careful to leave the head of cauliflower intact.
- Drizzle olive oil over the entire head of cauliflower (top, sides, and bottom) and rub it with your hands to fully coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Place in baking dish or cast iron pan and cover tightly with foil.
- Bake covered for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 45 minutes or until fork tender.
For the Sauce:
- Start this when cauliflower is almost done cooking; it doesn’t take long to make! In a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together cream, Dijon mustard, flour, chives, and salt. Heat, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in butter until melted.
- Pour sauce over the entire cauliflower, or over slices, immediately prior to serving. Garnish with additional chives, if desired.
You may use half & half instead of cream in the sauce if desired.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1 of 6
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 244Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 44mgSodium: 422mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 3g
RachelCooks.com sometimes provides nutritional information, but these figures should be considered estimates, as they are not calculated by a registered dietician. Please consult a medical professional for any specific nutrition, diet, or allergy advice.
Husband’s take: He wasn’t quite as passionately in love with it as I am, but he did say it was the best cauliflower he’s ever tasted. I think. Or maybe that was just me saying it on repeat. I can’t really remember, my memory is clouded by creamy Dijon sauce.
Changes I would make: None! A sprinkle of fresh chives would make this prettier, in hindsight. If you’re serving it for guests or friends, you might want to consider garnishing it that way.
Disclosure: I have been compensated by Milk Means More for my time to develop this whole roasted cauliflower recipe and write this post. All opinions are as always, my own. Find out more about why Milk Means More on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest.