December is one of my favorite times of the year. My birthday, a handful of friends birthdays, Christmas, vacation days, visiting with friends who are in town, snowboarding and a lot of shopping, will all be crammed into the next 3 weeks. Yes it is packed, and I feel a bit stressed, but instead of complaining about the jammed parking lots and inevitable snow, I have decided to take a different approach. I am smiling at the twinkling lights, cranking the holiday tunes, and planning gifts I know will bring smiles to my families faces. I am enjoying every minute.
And speaking of enjoyment, let’s talk cauliflower. Perhaps a few of you are thinking, ehh, cauliflower, but there is something special, magical even, that happens to this unassuming vegetable when it is roasted. Unlike most others, it holds its structure, while the edges brown into a magnificent color and caramelized flavor. It is barely breakfast right now, but I am day-dreaming about my lunch leftovers. I hope my excitement is contagious for cauliflower, and well, December. Because they both can be so wonderful—just give them a chance.
serves 4 as a side dish
1/4 c pine nuts
1 large head cauliflower, cut into tiny florets
2 T olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 t ground mustard
1/2 t salt
pepper, to taste
2 T chopped chives
In a large sauté pan, add pine nuts over medium heat, and cook, stirring often, 5-7 minutes, until toasted. Transfer pine nuts to a serving bowl. Place pan back on heat and add cauliflower, olive oil, lemon juice, ground mustard and salt. Cook, 10-12 minutes, shaking or stirring every few minutes, until cauliflower is golden brown. Transfer cauliflower to the serving bowl with pine nuts. Season to taste with pepper, and top with chives.