I’ve probably mentioned this before, Barefoot Contessa Ina Garten is my all-time favorite celebrity chef!. I love watching her shows on Food Network. Ina’s soothing voice, her serene kitchen, her use of all-natural ingredients, her adorable husband Jeffrey, I could go on about why I like Ina Garten. I’ve also mentioned that though I love her recipes they do tend to be more meat heavy. However that has never deterred me from making her recipes, I just improvise and omit the meat and substitute with something vegetarian. This cauliflower toast on the other hand is one of Ina’s vegetarian recipes! The moment I saw her making it on one of her newer episodes I knew I had to try it right away. A gooey cheesy toast all topped with roasted cauliflower looked so good folks, that my mouth was salivating 😋!
Easy recipe with stupendous results
This is an awesome toast to make on a Sunday for brunch accompanied with a simple salad. Just roast the cauliflower with onions and garlic, a few chili fakes, salt and pepper. Once the cauliflower is roasted all golden brown take it out of the oven and switch to broil. Then all you do is toast up good whole grain farm bread in a toaster and top it with cauliflower and a little cheese. Then broil for a minute or two until the cheese is melted. Garnish with chives and serve warm! Who wouldn’t want this beauty on a lazy Sunday!!
Use good whole grain bread for a thick crunchy toast
For these toasts to work you have to get good farm bread because you want a good hefty bread that can hold the cauliflower. We got ours from our local bakery – a whole wheat farm bread and it worked out perfectly.
With good cheese a little goes a long way
Ina’s original recipe had lots of cheese, like 12 ounces Italian mascarpone cheese, 6 ounces Gruyere cheese, and Parmesan cheese that get mixed into the roasted cauliflower. But I thought let me try and healthyfy the recipe. I omitted the cheese sauce and the 4 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, and instead sprinkled a little cheese on top of each toast. Just enough to get a melting cheesy look. You know what? These toasts tasted amazing!! One would never know these are healthyish too!
Use really flavorful cheese and you don’t need to use a lot. That’s the trick get a delicious gooey cheesy flavor with little cheese, a little goes a long way. I like white cheddar, gruyere, gouda, or Parmesan.
Onions and garlic add lots of flavor
Onions and garlic when roasted taste so good! Why not add it to cauliflower? Who’s with me?
For Ina Garten’s original recipe here is the link Cauliflower Toast on Food Network by Ina Garten. Below is my modified healthyfied recipe. Enjoy!
with inspiration from Ina Garten on Food Network
makes 6-8 hefty cauliflower toasts
- 1 head of cauliflower (2 pounds) cut into medium sized florets
- 1 large onion thinly sliced
- 6 cloves garlic thickly sliced
- 4 tablespoons good olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 6-8 slices country-style bread
- Italian Parmesan cheese – 6 tbsp
- 1/4 cup good cheddar cheese or gruyere or gouda shredded
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
- 1 lemon
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Spread the cauliflower, onions and garlic on 2 baking sheets (if needed to get a think layer of veggies). You don’t want to crowd the veggies as you want them to roast and not steam. (A trick I learnt from Ina Garten!) Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, pepper and chili flakes and toss everything together.
- Place in the oven and roast for 15 minutes. Move the veggies around and then continue to roast for an additional 15 minutes until the veggies are golden brown. Take out of the oven and set aside. Change the oven setting to broil.
- Toast the farm bread in a toaster until slightly brown. Next top with cauliflower mix. Top the veggies with a little cheese.
- Place the toasts on a baking sheet and broil for 1-2 minutes until cheese is melted. Take out of the oven and place on a platter. Garnish with chives and squeeze of lemon juice. Serve warm.