Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Whipped Goat Cheese

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While flipping through my latest issue of Bon Appetit, a picture similar to this jumped out at me immediately.

I couldn’t not try out this appetizer. Whipped goat cheese? Um, yes please. This was not a tough sell.

???????????????????????????????If this seems a bit elaborate for a roasted vegetable, it is. It’s worth it. The cooking liquid gives it a spicy cook, the roasting makes it crispy, and the whipped goat cheese makes it memorable. Try this at your next casual dinner, served family-style.

I cut the whipped goat cheese in half, and it’s still well more than I need. I think it would be delicious on a burger, or an ear of corn. Any other ideas?

When a recipe calls for “dry” white wine, they mean one that isn’t sweet. I used an unoaked chardonnay, but use one you like.

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Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Whipped Goat Cheese

Adapted from Bon Appetit

Serves 6 as an appetizer

8 cups water
2 1/2 cups dry white wine
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup kosher salt
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon sugar
1 bay leaf
1 head of cauliflower, leaves removed
2 oz. goat cheese
2 oz. cream cheese
1 oz. feta
3 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon olive oil plus more for serving
Coarse sea salt (for serving)

Preheat oven to 475°. Bring wine, oil, kosher salt, juice, butter, red pepper flakes, sugar, bay leaf, and 8 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Add cauliflower, reduce heat, and simmer, turning occasionally, until a knife easily inserts into center, 15-20 minutes.

Using 2 slotted spoons or a mesh spider, transfer cauliflower to a rimmed baking sheet, draining well. Roast, rotating sheet halfway through, until brown all over, 30-40 minutes.

Blend cheeses and tablespoons oil in a food processor until smooth; season with sea salt if needed. Transfer whipped goat cheese to a serving bowl and drizzle with oil. Do Ahead: whipped goat cheese can be made 1 day ahead; cover and chill.

Transfer cauliflower to a plate. Drizzle with oil; sprinkle with sea salt. Serve with whipped goat cheese.
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