Reserved pasta water “cooks” the sauce in this delicious vegetarian pasta dish.
The food processor does most of the work for this dish. You pulse ingredients and then mix them together with piping hot linguine, adding pasta water to thin it out to your desired consistency.
It takes a little bit of time to toast the nuts and get everything pulsed and mixed together, but you can do most of it while the pasta water comes up to a boil.
I really enjoyed the richness that the sun-dried tomatoes and capers added to this dish. I used Pecorino Romano cheese and it worked out great! Next time, I’d probably pulse the cauliflower a little bit finer, but the taste was great, and my Italian husband really enjoyed it, too.
1 small head or 1/2 large head cauliflower (about 1 pound or 455 grams), trimmed of leaves, cored and cut into large chunks
1 garlic clove
Generous pinch of red pepper flakes
1/2 cup (70 grams) almonds or pine nuts, toasted and cooled
2-ounce (55-gram) chunk Romano or Parmesan cheese, plus a little more for passing
4 sun-dried tomatoes (dry variety; if oil- packed, be sure to mince them by hand separately, so the oil doesn’t gum up the food processor mixture, before you add them)
1 tablespoon drained capers
Few tablespoons fresh parsley leaves
1/3 cup (80ml) olive oil
1/2 to 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar (to taste)
1 pound (455 grams) linguine
See The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook for the full recipe.