Pesto sauces can be greatly improved by simply cooking some of the ingredients before blending them together, as in this recipe for cauliflower-almond pesto from Okie Dokie Artichokie. Cooked cauliflower creates a smooth, nutty flavor further enhanced by raw almonds. Garlic, anchovy and Parmesan add sweet and salty notes — just enough to hug a heap of perfectly salted noodles.
4 cups cauliflower florets
1/2 cup olive oil
1 fat garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon minced shallot
2 anchovy filets (the kind packed in olive oil)
1 teaspoon fresh thyme
1 cup cauliflower cooking water
2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup raw, whole almonds
1 teaspoon sea salt
A few grindings fresh black pepper
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