Roasted Cauliflower

Tired of steamed cauliflower? Try roasting it! Roasting brings out nutty, buttery flavors in the cauliflower. A squeeze of lemon juice and some Parmesan cheese are all you need to turn this into an excellent side dish.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

Cauliflower. Plain, simple, and on its own? Rather unimaginative.

But roasted? Until the edges get all browned and caramelized? Totally different story.

When roasted, cauliflower becomes nutty and buttery, but without any nuts or butter. Roasted, it is the perfect vehicle for garlic, olive oil, lemon and Parmesan.

I grew up with basic steamed cauliflower, which is fine and good and sometimes all that you need. But if you’ve never had roasted cauliflower, I urge you to try it! It will transform a picky I-don’t-like-vegetables eater into a cauliflower addict.

How to Cut and Core Cauliflower

It’s easy to cut and core cauliflower! Just pull off the leaves from the base, and cut the cauliflower in quarters, from the top of the crown through the stem. Lay the cauliflower quarters on the cutting board and angle the knife to cut the florets from the core.

Check out this post on how to cut and core cauliflower for the visual guide.

Can You Roast Frozen Cauliflower?

Sure! In fact if you are starting with frozen cauliflower florets, it’s better to not defrost them first. Here are some tips to adjust this recipe for frozen cauliflower:

  • Raise the oven temperature by 50°F (10°C), to 450°F (323°C). You want searing dry heat to evaporate any ice condensation on the frozen cauliflower, so that the cauliflower roasts in the oven, not steams.
  • Toss the florets generously with oil, making sure they are truly well coated, before putting them in the oven. The oil will help the cauliflower edges brown and help keep the florets from drying out.
  • Stir the florets half-way through cooking, so more sides get exposed to the high heat.

What to serve with roasted cauliflower

Cauliflower pairs beautifully as a side for chicken, so consider serving it with roast chicken, or lemon chicken. I also love baked cod or halibut with roasted cauliflower on side. Cauliflower would work well alongside grilled beef too, like these grilled skirt steak skewers.

5 More Ways to Love Cauliflower:

  • Roasted Curried Cauliflower 
  • Simple Cauliflower Soup
  • Pasta with Cauliflower, Tomato, and Parmesan
  • Cauliflower Gnocchi (Trader Joe’s Copycat!)
  • How to Make the Best Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Watch the video below for how to roast cauliflower!

Updated September 26, 2019 : We spiffed up this post to make it sparkle! No changes to the original recipe.

This recipe is more of a method than a precise recipe with exact amounts. Sprinkle as much or as little Parmesan cheese as you want.

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or about half a lemon)
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Method

1 Preheat oven, prepare pan: Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C). Lightly oil a large roasting pan or baking sheet, or line with aluminum foil.

2 Prep the cauliflower:  Place the cauliflower florets in a bowl. Toss with minced garlic. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Drizzle with olive oil and toss so that the florets are lightly coated with oil.

3 Spread on roasting pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper: Spread the florets out into a single layer on the roasting pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4 Roast until lightly browned: Roast the cauliflower at 400°F (205°C), uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the tops are lightly brown. Use a fork to test for doneness; the tines should easily pierce the cauliflower when done.

5 Sprinkle with Parmesan: Remove the cauliflower from the oven and sprinkle generously with Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.

Posted by gen_gen - 2019 at 

Categories: Video   Tags: , , , ,

Mom’s Perfect Pork Chops

Pan-fried pork chops on the stovetop are so quick and easy! Use a homemade dry rub to really bring out the flavor of the chops.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4 to 6, depending on the thickness of the chops

Sometimes the best food is really the simplest.

We experiment frequently with different ways of preparing pork chops, but the way we have pork chops most regularly is with a simple dry rub and pan frying. My mother has been making chops this way for years!

How to Season Pork Chops

We use a favorite dry rub recipe of my father’s, which includes cumin, black pepper, coriander, sugar, and salt. It requires some advance preparation — heating the whole spices to release their aromas, and grinding them in a blender or spice grinder.

The dry rub instructions make 1/2 cup of dry rub, for which you will only need 1 or 2 teaspoons for this recipe. Once we make a batch of the rub, we just use what we need and save the rest for future pork chops.

Why grind fresh spices instead of using already ground? Grinding fresh spices guarantees better flavor, so if you have the time and the whole spices, we recommend it.

If we are out of the dry rub, my mother will typically uses a bit of paprika, salt and pepper to season the chops.

How to Tell When Pork Chops are Done

My mother uses a touch test, which is easy to learn, and which I now use as well. (The firmer the meat, the more cooked it is.) If you wait until you see juice oozing out of the top of the chop, it is definitely done.

You can also check the internal temperature of the pork with a digital thermometer; when the pork registers 145°F in the middle, it’s done.

Benefit of using a cast iron pan to cook pork chops

My mother likes to use a cast iron pan to cook pork chops. A cast iron pan may be slower to heat initially, but it holds its heat well. Once the chops get a good sear on both sides, mom turns off the heat and lets the pork chops continue to cook gently in the residual heat.

This approach saves energy and helps prevent the chops from over-cooking. After a couple minutes the cooling pan helps keep the pork chops warm.

What to serve with pork chops?

Pork chops will go with practically anything — potatoes, pasta, rice for starch, and kale, spinach, broccoli, or Brussels sprouts for green vegetables.

Pork loves being paired with fruit! The sweetness in fruit brings out the natural sweetness in the pork. Applesauce or cooked apple slices pair perfectly with pork.

Sauerkraut is another natural accompaniment to pork; its sweet/sour tanginess intensifies the flavors of the pork. Other forms of cooked cabbage work well too.

PORK CHOPS LOVE! HERE ARE 5 MORE WAYS TO COOK THEM:

  • Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Garlic and Greens
  • Citrus-Brined Grilled Pork Chops
  • Sheet Pan Ranch Pork Chops
  • Pork Chops with Ginger Pear Sauce
  • Skillet Pork Chops with Cabbage

Updated September 25, 2019 : We spiffed up this post with some extra info to help you make even BETTER pork chops. No changes to the original recipe. Enjoy!

The dry rub recipe makes 1/2 cup, for which you will only need 1 or 2 teaspoons for this recipe. Save the rest for future use!

Ingredients

For Dad’s dry rub (makes 1/2 cup):

  • 1/4 cup cumin seeds
  • 3 tablespoons whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt

For the pork chops:

  • 4 pork chops (bone-in or boneless)
  • 1 teaspoon bacon fat or extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons dry rub

Method

1 Make the dry rub: Combine cumin, peppercorns, and coriander in a heavy medium skillet. Stir over medium heat until fragrant and toasted, about 8 minutes. Cool slightly.

Finely grind toasted spices in blender, spice grinder, or with a mortar and pestle. Transfer to a small bowl. Mix in sugar and salt.

2 Prep the pan and the pork: Heat a large cast iron frying pan to medium high or high heat (hot enough to sear the meat).

If using bone-in chops, score the fat that surrounds the chops with a couple vertical cuts to help prevent the chops from buckling as they cook.

Sprinkle a pinch of dry rub spices (about 1/8 teaspoon or a little more) on each of the pork chops. Using your fingers, rub the spices into the meat. Turn the pork chops over and repeat on the other side.

3 Add the chops to the pan: Once the pan is hot, add a teaspoon of oil or fat to the pan and coat the bottom of the pan. Right before you put the pork chops into the pan sprinkle each side with a little salt, or you can salt the chops in the pan.

Place the pork chops with the thickest, boniest parts toward the center of the pan where they get the most heat. Make sure the chops are not crowding each other too much.

You may need to cook them in batches. There should be space between the chops in the pan or the meat will steam and not sear properly.

4 Sear the chops on both sides: Sear the pork chops, about 2 minutes on each side. Watch carefully, as soon as the chops are browned, flip them. As soon as you flip the pork chops, if you are using a cast iron pan, you can turn off the heat. Cast iron holds heat very well and there will be enough heat in the pan to finish cooking the meat.

5 Cover pan if working with thick chops to finish cooking: If you have chops that are a lot thicker than 3/4-inch (many are sold that are 1 1/2-inches thick), you can put a cover on the pan and let the pork chops finish cooking for 5 minutes or so.

If you are using a cast iron pan and have turned off the heat, there should be enough heat if you cover the pan to finish the cooking of a thicker chop. If not, turn the heat to low and cover.

The easiest way to tell when the pork chops are done is to press on them with your fingertip. If they are firm to the touch, they are done. (See the touch test.) If you wait until you see juice oozing out of the top of a chop, it is definitely done. You can also check the internal temperature of the pork with a digital thermometer; when the pork registers 145°F in the middle, it’s done.

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Categories: Comfort Food   Tags: , ,

Oatmeal Buttermilk Pancakes

Looking for a gluten-free breakfast that tastes great and is easy to make? Well, look no further than these Oatmeal Pancakes. No special ingredients required — just rolled oats!

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 12 pancakes

Pancakes made “from scratch” are a special treat, and this batter, made from old-fashioned rolled oats, is quick and easy to make, so put away that mix!

Chopped oats provide these pancakes with plenty of texture and a satisfying nutty, earthy taste. Oatmeal pancakes are sure to please any palate but those sensitive to gluten will be especially appreciative of this breakfast because there is no wheat flour. Just make sure your oats are labeled “gluten-free!”

A food processor makes quick work of this breakfast by blending whole oats into oat flour. Just set aside a small amount of oats to add to the final batter and grind the rest in your food processor (5 seconds!). Add the remaining ingredients to the ground oats; push the button for a couple of pulses, and you’re done!

TIPS FOR COOKING THE PERFECT PANCAKE

  • Pick the correct pan: A griddle is my first choice for making pancakes because it’s a wide shallow pan without the tall sides of a skillet. Shorter sides make it easier to flip the pancakes. If you don’t have a griddle, a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet is also a good choice even though the pancakes may be a bit harder to flip because of the higher sides. Both distribute the heat evenly and are essentially non-stick. Failing those two options, use a non-stick skillet.
  • Lightly oil the griddle/pan: Whether using a skillet or griddle, a thin slick of oil or a pat of butter is all you need. Drizzle a few drops of oil (or a pat of butter) in the pan and spread it around. Repeat between each new round of batter. I prefer oil to butter, but really either will work.
  • Cook on medium-low temperature: Low and slow is the way to go. Once the pan is hot, turn the heat to medium-low. The pancakes cook slowly, giving the outsides time to brown and the insides time to cook. A hot griddle may burn the pancakes too quickly on the outside, leaving the inside raw.
  • Know when to flip: Once bubbles form on the surface of the batter and the edges start to look a little dry, it’s time to flip. Slide a wide spatula under the pancake (try not to move it) and peek to make sure it is brown. Then slide the spatula all the way under the pancake and flip it. The first side takes longer to cook than the second.

CAN YOU REFRIGERATE OR FREEZE LEFTOVER PANCAKES?

Yes and no. You can refrigerate pancakes for up to 5 days. Cool them, then stack on a plate between waxed paper and cover with plastic wrap. Reheat them in the microwave, or spread them on a baking sheet and reheat them in a 350ºF oven.

If you want to freeze them, layer them between waxed or parchment paper and enclose them in a plastic freezer bag. Store for up to 2 months. Reheat in the same way as the refrigerated pancakes.

The only downside is that they do lose a little of that hot-off-the-griddle, crisp-on-the-outside quality, but then, slathered with butter and syrup, it may not matter all that much!

YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TOO MANY PANCAKE RECIPES!

  • Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
  • Chocolate Chip Pancakes with Raspberry Sauce
  • Homemade Pancake Mix
  • Buckwheat Pancakes
  • How to Make Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes

Updated October 1, 2019 : We revised this recipe to make it easier to make and more fool-proof. We hope you like it!

Ingredients

  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil (for the skillet)

Special equipment:

  • Food processor

Ingredients

  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 to 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil (for the skillet)

Special equipment:

  • Food processor

Method

1 Grind the oats: Set aside 1/2 cup of the oats to add to the batter later. In a food processor, grind the remaining 2 1/2 cups oats until the mixture resembles coarse whole-wheat flour, with a few particles of oats.

2 Make the batter: Add the baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, eggs, 1 1/2 cups of the buttermilk, oil or melted butter, honey, and vanilla to the food processor bowl and pulse a few times, until blended.

Pour the batter into a bowl and stir in the remaining 1/2 cup oats. Let stand for 5 to 10 minutes. The mixture will not be not completely smooth, and it will thicken as it sits. If the batter becomes too thick at any point feel free to thin with some of the remaining buttermilk.

3 Heat a skillet or griddle: Pour a few drops of oil into the skillet or griddle and spread with a paper towel. Set the pan over medium heat. The pan is hot enough when you drop a few drops of water on it and they sizzle. Turn the heat to medium-low.

4 Cook the pancakes: Ladle about 1/3 cup of batter for each pancake onto the skillet. With the back of the ladle, spread the batter into 4-inch circles. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, or until bubbles form on top and the bottoms look brown when you peek under the pancakes with a spatula. Turn them and cook for another 2 minutes, or until browned. Repeat until all the batter is used.

5 Serve the pancakes: Serve them hot off the griddle or keep them warm in a 325ºF oven on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Serve with lots of butter, fresh fruit (if you wish), and maple syrup.

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Categories: Gluten-Free   Tags: , ,

Negroni Cocktail

The Negroni is one of the easiest cocktails to make at home! Made with one part each of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth, it’s a little bitter, a little sweet, and oh so delicious.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 2 minutes
  • Yield: 1 cocktail

You may love it or hate it, but you’ll never forget your first Negroni! This cocktail can be a bit polarizing, but for those who love it, it inspires an almost fanatical devotion.

Earthy, bitter, and sweet all at once, its simple proportions – one part each of gin, Campari, and sweet vermouth – make it one of the easiest cocktails to mix at home!

The History of the Negroni

Legend has it that the Negroni originated in 1919 at an Italian café when Count Negroni asked for an Americano (Campari, vermouth, and club soda) with gin in place of the club soda. The mix was serendipitous, and a famous cocktail was born.

Since then the Negroni has become incredibly popular. It has such an enthusiastic following in the cocktail world that there is a whole event devoted to it! During Negroni Week you can sip Negronis at local bars and a portion of the proceeds will go to charity.

What Should I Know About Campari?

There is only one brand of Campari, and if you’re going to make this drink you definitely need some.

Campari is a bitter, herbal Italian liqueur. It also has notes of orange and a bit of spicy sweetness. If you’ve ever had Aperol – the star of the Aperol spritz – then you get the idea: They both belong to the family of bitter Italian liqueurs called Amaros, but the bitterness of Campari is a bit more pronounced. Campari gives the Negroni its characteristic bitter edge, and also its bright red color. You can find Campari in the liqueurs section at most larger liquor stores.

What Gin and Vermouth Should I Use?

While you can certainly use a premium gin in a Negroni, it’s not necessary to spend a lot of money. A mid-range gin (I like Boodles or Broker’s) will do fine.

However, it is worth shelling out for a nicer sweet vermouth. Carpano Antica is really the dream, but other high-end vermouths will do as well.

What Glass Should I Use?

I’ve always preferred this drink served up – that is, without ice – in a cocktail glass. But it’s far more common (at bars and on the internet) to see it served in an old fashioned glass, over ice. Try both and see what you like!

What Are the Correct Proportions?

The incredibly simple proportions of the Negroni (just 1: 1: 1) are surely a part of its enduring appeal, but you can make it other ways. I’ve had Negronis made with two parts gin to one part vermouth and Campari, which results in a delicate (albeit gin-heavy) drink. I’ve also seen recipes that favor Campari over the sweet vermouth for a more bitter, bracing cocktail.

As with all cocktails, I encourage you to experiment! Start with the classic recipe, then let your imagination and your inclinations take you from there.

More Gin Cocktails to Enjoy!

  • Bee’s Knees Cocktail
  • French 75 Cocktail
  • Blood Orange French 75 Cocktail
  • Aviation Cocktail

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounce gin
  • 1 1/2 ounce Campari
  • 1 1/2 oz sweet (Italian) vermouth
  • Ice
  • Orange peel for garnish

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 ounce gin
  • 1 1/2 ounce Campari
  • 1 1/2 oz sweet (Italian) vermouth
  • Ice
  • Orange peel for garnish

Method

1 Make the drink: Combine all ingredients into a shaker or mixing glass, add ice, and stir for 30 seconds. Let sit for 30 seconds, and then strain into a cocktail glass or, if you prefer, an old fashioned glass with ice.

2 Garnish: Garnish with orange peel.

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Categories: Campari   Tags: , ,

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