It’s been a rather snowy day here today in PA; it hasn’t let up since this morning, and the plows have been going non-stop. My pumpkins and mums are covered in a six-inch layer of wet, heavy snow, and it feels way to wintery for an October day. But despite the seemingly endless crazy weather we’ve experienced since moving here, I am still super excited to be living in an area with Wegmans in reasonable driving distance again. I am a huge Wegmans fan, not only because it started in my home town, but for reasons like this…fresh Romanesco.
While browsing the produce aisle, Mike and I came across this crazy coral reef like vegetable mounded neatly in-between the broccoli and cauliflower, and I have to say it was the first time we’ve seen this usual but beautiful vegetable. Not quite sure what we were going to do with it, we decided to pick up a head, and figure the rest out later; it was way to pretty to pass up.
Browsing the net for recipes I found some that involved simple preparation, while others that were more complex. I decided to keep it simple the first time I made it because I didn’t want to maim the pretty shape or mask the flavor so I turned to roasting.
I really liked the flavor; I thought it landed somewhere between cauliflower and broccoli and enjoyed the lightly roasted taste after baking. If you haven’t made it before and are interested in giving it a try, roasting would be a great first attempt, but you could easily sub it in for a favorite broccoli or cauliflower recipe without issue; I may be using Romanesco in my Broccoli Pasta recipe very soon.
Roasted Romanesco1 head of Romanesco 2-3 cloves of garlic, sliced thinly lengthwise 1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil Pecorino Romano for shaving
Pre-heat oven to 425 °F. Clean Romanesco, and cut into bite size pieces, trying to keep florets intact. I found it easier to cut from the inside core outwards. Place in a 12″ oven safe skillet and add just enough water to steam slightly (1/4-1/2 cup) and a nice pinch of salt. Cover and bring water to boil, and steam for three to four minutes. Drain water from pan and toss Romanesco with garlic and olive oil.
Transfer pan to pre-heated oven and roast for 25-35 minutes or until they develop a light caramelized color and the garlic is golden; tossing once or twice while roasting. If you don’t have an oven safe skillet, transfer Romanesco to a baking sheet or dish and roast. Remove from oven and season to taste with salt and pepper; shave Pecorino Romano on top to taste (I used a vegetable peeler).