Yet another delicious and healthy-ish recipe from Serena Wolf of Domesticateme.com. I really want to eat this right now! Not only is this girl pumping out awesome recipes on a regular basis but she’s hilarious in the process; so real and approachable that you actually want to read everything and not just rush to the recipe. Thanks Serena for another culinary hit. You can check out her fantastic cookbook, The Dude Diet here. Also, Serena was a guest on our podcast, listen here.
One of the most frequent questions I get as a food blogger is, “Where do you find your recipe inspiration”? Usually, the answer to this question is pretty straightforward: Magazines. Cookbooks. Restaurants. Logan.
But every once in a while, it’s a really badass experience that inspires an epic meal, and in this case, it was dinner in a 450 square foot mason jar in the heart of Chelsea. No joke. A few weeks ago, I was invited to a fabulous multicourse feast inside a lifesize farm jar to celebrate the launch of Prego’s new Farmers’ Market sauce line, and I became an instant fangirl. Each dish featured one of three uber flavorful sauces (Classic Marinara, Roasted Garlic, and Tomato Basil), and I was pleasantly surprisedby how much I loved all of them. My general complaint about store-bought tomato sauces is that they’re overly sweet and tomato paste-y, but these sauces were smooth, perfectly balanced, and incredibly fresh-tasting. HALLELUJAH.
I’d been in the teensiest culinary slump leading up to that dinner, but as I walked home with my swag bag jars happily clinking against each other, my mind was racing with endless saucy ideas. Pizza stuffed peppers! Lasagna roll-ups! Spicy baked eggs! Cauliflower Parmesan!
Hold up. CAULIFLOWER PARMESAN??!! Done and done. (As per usual, I didn’t Google to see if someone had already had this genius idea. You know I like to “invent” things.)
As always, cheesy panko and the culinary powers that be came through for yours truly, and I’m thrilled to report that Roasted Cauliflower Parmesan was a big-time win. Tender, slightly caramelized cauliflower “steaks” smothered in Prego Farmer’s Market sauce and melted mozzarella, and topped with plenty of whole wheat Panko and Parmesan is the fantasy meal I didn’t know was missing from my life. It’s comforting, yet still shockingly light and nutritious, and I love to imagine it as the star of your Meatless Monday menus this fall.
Talk about a creative slump-buster, people! Cauliflower Parm is my Taye Diggs, and I’m downright giddy to have gotten my groove back.
Not gonna lie, this victory is thanks in no small part to really, really good tomato sauce, aka Prego’s Farmers’ Market Tomato & Basil Sauce. The flavor really is unparalleled, and it’s deliciously comforting to know that it’s made with only a handful of ingredients—including tomatoes picked at their peak—that can all be found at your local farmers’ market. I highly recommend snagging a jar (or five) the next time you’re at the grocery store for this recipe and any other awesome creations you have up your sleeve.
The recipe is pretty easy to execute, but I do want to quickly head off some potential cauliflower issues at the pass. For best results, you want to slice your cauliflower into roughly 1-inch “steaks”. These steaks are most sturdy when cut from the center portion of a head of cauliflower with a very sharp knife (the outer slices tend to just crumble into florets), which is why you’ll need two heads of cauliflower. I know that’s annoying, but you can save the outer cauli slices for another use. I like to just roast the extra florets at the same time as the steaks, and then add them to salads and grain bowls throughout the week.
You’ll also find that you need to flip your steaks halfway through the cooking time. Please do this quickly and confidently to avoid breaking them! But if your steaks do fall apart? Whatever. Don’t let it kill your vibe. The recipe is equally delicious (if slightly less aesthetically pleasing) made with florets.
When it comes to serving your Parm, you can’t go wrong with a simple green salad, but pasta or zucchini noodles tossed with a little extra sauce are awesome when you’re in the mood for a heartier feast. Red wine optional, but obviously encouraged.
p.s. Logan reheated this recipe for himself the other night and seriously fanboyed over it. He did top his serving with sausage, but it was of the lean turkey variety, so I still consider it a Dude Diet win.