Monday, February 10, 2020

Charred Cauliflower with Brown Butter Cauliflower Purée | 香烤椰菜花扒兩食

To many people including myself once upon a time, cauliflower on its own just screamed bland, boring and bleh. And then charred cauliflower "steaks" and whole roasted cauliflowers started appearing everywhere, offering a satisfying, meaty meat-alternative worthy as a main event. I have been dying to jump on that bandwagon for long, and the opportunity finally presented itself when I lay my eyes on a crate of gorgeous cauliflower at a market in Amsterdam.

Indeed, plain steamed or blanched cauliflower may taste rather uninspiring. Roasting cauliflower and giving it a little char brings out its hidden sweetness and nutty aroma, thereby transforming it into something else mouthwatering. Here cradling my heavy head of cauliflower in my kitchen half a planet away, I decided to let it shine and be the star ingredient in a delicious main course two-ways.

For those of you looking to curb your carbohydrates intake, rejoice! Cauliflower purée is not only creamy and comforting like mashed potatoes, it is also healthier and, well, much lower in carbs. Being free of starch, cauliflower purée also has the benefit of not being prone to over-whipping like potatoes can be. So whip it all day and it will still be lusciously creamy!

Puréed cauliflower can be made first by simply boiling or steaming the vegetable, but boiling leaches flavor and nutrients out of the florets and steaming does little to enhance the flavor. By roasting we bring out the rich, nutty flavors - resulting in a purée that is complex and robust in flavor and eliminating any need for excessive seasoning. Stirring in a touch of brown butter adds depth and a magical toasty flavor that perfectly rounds out the nuttiness of the cauliflower. 

For a more luscious, full-bodied purée, go for heavy cream as your choice of liquid, or use chicken stock for a more savory direction. Of course you can also use regular milk or plant-based milk like I did! Last but not least, serve with a dollop of fresh homemade pesto or chimichurri to take the experience up a notch! Click below for my pesto recipe:
Fresh Homemade Pesto 
1 large head cauliflower
2 tablespoon butter
1 cup milk, cream, or chicken stock
Extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Optional: fresh pesto or chimichurri, to serve

Charred Cauliflower Steaks
1. Preheat oven to 200C/400F. Remove the tough outer leaves from cauliflower and halve the cauliflower. From top to bottom, cut two large 3/4-inch thick steaks, one steak from each of the two halves.

2. Season the steaks with salt and freshly ground pepper. Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and sear the cauliflower for 3-4 minutes per side, until deeply golden. Transfer skillet to the oven and bake for 8-10 minutes, or until cauliflower is tender.

Brown Butter Roasted Cauliflower Purée
 1. Roughly chop the remaining cauliflower into small pieces until they resemble crumbs. Place on a foil-lined baking tray, toss with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast, flipping cauliflower halfway through roasting, about 18 minutes or until cauliflower is browned and tender.

2. In a saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Watch closely as butter foams up and begins to deepen in color from golden tan to a toasty brown. Remove from heat and transfer to a heat proof bowl once you smell a nutty aroma.

3. In the same saucepan, add roasted cauliflower crumbs and choice of milk/cream/chicken stock. Bring to a simmer then cook gently until cauliflower has softened in the liquid, about 5 minutes. Reserve a small amount of cooked liquid. Using a blender or immersion blender, blend cauliflower to form a smooth purée, adding more liquid if necessary to reach desired consistency. Fold in brown butter and serve warm.

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【 香烤椰菜花扒兩食 】

疫情的威脅下,公眾都減少了外出。今個情人節,倒不如就與情侶齊齊煮餐溫馨晚餐。忘了訂玫瑰花也別操心,有椰菜花代替啊~! 又一走肉主食主意,或作可口拌菜,配上牛排烤雞就最適合不過了。

椰菜花                               1 大顆
牛油                                   30 克
牛奶/鮮奶油/高湯          250 ml
初榨橄欖油                      適量
海鹽、黑椒                      適量

1. 預熱焗爐至 200C/400F。將椰菜花一開為二,再於每邊切出一件 0.75 寸厚的椰菜花扒。兩面撒點海鹽和黑椒簡單調味。
2. 鑄鐵鍋燒熱,注入橄欖油。平放椰菜花扒,每邊煎 3 至 4 分鐘至金黃色。
3. 把椰菜花扒連鍋放進焗爐烤 8 至 10 分鐘。

1. 把剩餘椰菜花切碎,鋪放在蓋了錫紙的烤盤上,撒上適量橄欖油、海鹽和黑椒,烤約 18 分鐘。
2. 牛油以中慢火煮溶,期間會起泡。
3. 偶然用膠刮攪拌,煮至牛油開始呈現咖啡色小塊及聞到焦香後可以熄火。
4. 將焦香牛油倒入耐熱容器內備用,以防燒焦。
5. 鍋裡加入烤好的椰菜花碎及牛奶或高湯。 慢煮約 5 分鐘至椰菜花變軟。
6. 將部分煮過椰菜花的牛奶或高湯留起備用。用攪拌器把椰菜花打成蓉 ,期間慢慢一點點的加入牛奶或高湯調整濃度。
7. 最後將準備好的牛油加進,伴勻,香香滑滑的椰菜花蓉就完成喇。

在碟上塗一層椰菜花蓉,再放上香烤椰菜花扒,最後淋上剩餘的 brown butter 即成!配上新鮮自製 pesto sauce 就更份外滋味!

Tried this recipe?
Share with me or leave a comment! #alvinspenthousekitchen 
Find me on Instagram @alvinckl and @alvin.penthousekitchen and follow my Facebook Fan Page!