Rigatoni with Roasted Cauliflower and Capers

Cauliflower RigatoniThis is a great one to try when you’re in the mood for pasta but sick of red sauce. Especially in late fall or early winter when cauliflower is abundant.

Serves 4


1 head of cauliflower, chopped into small florets
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs*
12 ounces rigatoni
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 Tablespoons capers
1/4 cup pecarino romano, plus 2 Tablespoons


Heat oven to 400 degrees. Toss cauliflower with 1 Tablespoon olive oil and salt and pepper. Roast on a sheet pan until browned, approximately 20 minutes, turning once.

Toss bread crumbs with 1 Tablespoon olive oil and spread on a sheet pan. Toast in the oven for 10 minutes.

Put garlic, red pepper, and olive oil in a cold skillet. Heat over medium heat until garlic is soft, approximately 5 minutes. Add capers and toss.

Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cooking liquid. Drain and add to skillet with garlic, pepper and capers. Add cauliflower, 1/4 cup pecarino romano, and 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Toss, then add 1/2 cup bread crumbs, toss gently.

Pour pasta into serving bowls, then top with remaining bread crumbs and cheese. Serve.

*Pop a couple of slices of Italian bread in the food processor and grind until finely chopped