Of all the pasta shapes I think Orecchiette (little ears) is one of my favorites.
In this dish what may seem like unusual flavors are quite good ~
I like recipes that introduce us to new (new, to us) delicious flavor combinations.
This very old recipe is one of those ~
I find it brings a perfect balance; at once rich and buttery, a little salty and with small hints of sweetness with every few bites.
The straight-foward simplicity of it all!
No heavy, gloppy, fat laden sauce. I love this method of serving pasta.
And roasting is one of my favorite ways of preparing cauliflower ~ the taste, aroma and flavor mellow and the texture becomes more interesting than when steamed or boiled. Along with the orecchiette, it provides the perfect background when added to the crisp, buttery flavor of the toasted walnuts. Plumped and roasted raisins add a slightly sweet balance.
The original recipe calls for an Italian condiment known as Colatura.
Hmm. Not in MY pantry.
Since I didn't have any on hand I omitted it.
Colatura is syrupy liquid extracted from anchovies while processing and requires 5 months to produce. Its roots are traced back to ancient Rome. I had thought of incorporating some form of anchovy into the dish to compensate for it, but since one of us is NOT a huge fan of anchovies I simply omitted.
I did increase the amount of salt on the cauliflower while roasting to make up for extra flavor the Coladura would have provided.
Obviously a compromise, but one I can live with ~unless some day I have a chance to taste the real thing~ and find I've been mistaken.
And in that case, I'll be back immediately to tell you so. :D
We liked this recipe very much and I would definitely consider making it again ~ it's not heavy, is vegetarian friendly and (without the Coladura*) is budget friendly!
* If you can find it, 3 ounces of Coladura sells for around $25.
You may want to keep this one in mind when you're looking for a quick and healthy meal. Satisfying, delicious and comforting with wonderful flavors.
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About my recipes ~
Hi and welcome! I'm a long-time cook and tend to improvise often, adjusting recipes to my own taste. Usually I'll describe how I put the dish together so you can make it the way you like it.
I have cataloged some of the recipes in a printable format on my recipe blog, Once Upon a Plate ~ the recipes. Please LEFT-MOUSE click HEREif you would like to see what is available there.
Thank you so much for stopping by, and for any comments you would like to share. I read and appreciate every one! :)