Whole-Roasted Romanesco Cauliflower with Browned Butter and Garlic

Romanesco cauliflower is a beautiful demonstration of the mathematical principal of fractals. [satisfy your nerdy curiosities here and here] And, frankly, we find it mesmerizing.
 Romanesco cauliflower takes longer to soften, so while this recipe can be made with regular cauliflower, you’ll want to reduce the cooking time. Additionally, to skip the microwave step, you can stove-top steam the head of cauliflower before browning it in the oven.  

Recipe adapted from: https://thissillygirlskitchen.com/whole-roasted-romanesco-cauliflower-30-minutes/

Fun Facts: https://www.tastecooking.com/mathematicians-love-romanesco-cauliflower/

Serves: 2-3 servings as a side
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Ready In: 30 mins
  • 1 head Romanesco cauliflower
  • 1 TBSP olive oil
  • 1 tsp kosher salt, divided
  • 4 TBSP butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • Ground pepper, to taste
  1. Cut off cauliflower leaves and set aside to make delightful chips later, tossed with olive oil and sea salt and roasted. Optional.
  2. Carefully remove the bulk of the cauliflower stem, be sure to keep the outer clusters intact. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry.
  3. Rub the cauliflower with olive oil and sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of kosher salt. Place in an oven/microwave-safe baking dish, add 1/4 cup water to the dish, microwave on high for 10 minutes in 5-minute intervals. Cauliflower should be softened, but not mushy.
  4. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  5. Place baking dish with the cauliflower into the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes or until the tips are slightly browned.
  6. While the cauliflower is browning, make the sauce. Place a small pan over medium heat to melt the butter. Add garlic and pepper flakes once the butter is foamy. Cook until fragrant, stirring occasionally, allow the butter to brown. Remove from heat, add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and ground pepper, adjust to taste.
  7. When the cauliflower is done roasting, pour the butter sauce directly over it. Enjoy.