Whole Wheat Pasta with Cauliflower and Walnuts

There was not much at the farmers market yesterday except some great looking cauliflower. Even though I have not had a lot of experience working with this particular vegetable it has become one of my favorites. I love it roasted, steamed, mashed and creamed. In this recipe the cauliflower is sauteed (a new favorite) until just tender making the taste very subtle and sweet. The mildness of the cauliflower is a good match when set against the more assertive whole wheat noodle.

Recipe was adapted from Alice Waters book, Chez Panisse Vegetables


1 large head of cauliflower (cut into small florets)
1 medium onion (sliced thin)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
3/4 pounds of whole wheat pasta (linguine)
1 pinch red pepper flakes
White wine vinegar (splash)
1/2 lemon (juiced)
1/3 cup walnuts (large chop and toasted)
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 ounces feta cheese (diced)

To prepare:

Start a large pasta pot of salted water, bring to a boil. Add pasta, cook until al dente.

In the meantime saute' onion in a large heavy skillet with olive oil. After onion starts to soften, add cauliflower, season with salt and pepper, then add red pepper flakes. Saute' until cauliflower is crisp tender.Add garlic and remove pan from heat tossing and stirring so garlic does not burn. Add a splash of vinegar, about 3 tablespoons and the lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Add pasta along with a little of the pasta water, then walnuts. Drizzle with olive oil, add feta. Stir; then check seasonings again. Enjoy!

Note to self:

Dish should be finished with sprinkle of parsley


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