Buttery Black Garlic Whole Roasted Cauliflower is an easy to make intensely umami side dish for any festive meal, or alongside a Sunday roast. Carve into creamy black and white wedges and enjoy the tongue-tantalising flavors.
Carefully and without cutting into the cauliflower, remove the leaves. Slice the base so that it sits flat.
Place the whole cauliflower in a steamer basket (or a large sieve to steam in a large, covered pan) and steam for 10-12 minutes, depending on the size. Test for doneness by piercing the stem end with a skewer. If it is at all hesitant to go in, steam a couple of minutes longer. The florets need to stay quite firm so don't over do it. Let the cauliflower sit away from the heat so that it loses some of its moisture.
Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180C fan/ 200C/ 400F.
Chop the black garlic and raw garlic; add to a small food processor bowl along with the sherry vinegar, olive oil and butter. Process to a paste. You can do this with a pestle and mortar or fork and steep-sided bowl, too.
Lay the steamed cauliflower on a buttered/oiled tray. You can use a baking tray, cast iron skillet, enamelled, lidded pot (eg Falconware). Spread the black garlic paste all over the cauliflower. Cover the tay or pan with foil or lid and and roast for 45 minutes. Uncover and baste before open roasting for a further 30 minutes, basting once or twice. Serve in wedges as a side dish.
To make mini buttery black garlic roasted cauliflowers, steam for five minutes, roast under cover for 30 and uncovered for up to 30 minutes, basting a couple of times.
If you can't get black garlic, slice off the very top of a fat, whole head of garlic, and drizzle with 2 teaspoons of olive oil. Place in a foil parcel and roast at 200C/400F for 40-45 minutes. Squeeze each clove into a small food processor bowl with the other ingredients, using a bit of balsamic and sherry vinegars rather than just the sherry vinegar.