Smoked Cauliflower with Chimichurri Sauce
About the recipe
Smoking isn’t just a cooking technique to be used for meat and fish; smoking can add depth and “meatiness” to hardy vegetables as well.
When selecting which wood chips to use, it’s important to note that fruit and nut woods — cherry, apple and pecan — offer the mildest smoke flavor, and are perfect for smoking fruits and vegetables. Avoid wood chips that carry harsher smoke flavors, such as hickory or mesquite.
Serves: 2 to 4
Hands On Time: 1 hour and 0 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour and 0 minutes
1/2 bunch Italian parsley, leaves torn from stems and chopped
1/4 bunch cilantro, leaves torn from stems and chopped
1 (0.75-ounce) package fresh oregano, leaves stripped from stems and chopped
1 (0.75-ounce) package fresh mint, leaves stripped from stems and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Juice of 1 lime
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Apple or pecan wood chips, for smoking
1 head cauliflower, florets only
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
To make the chimichurri: In a medium bowl, combine the parsley, cilantro, oregano, mint, garlic and red pepper flakes. Add the vinegar and lime juice, and, while whisking constantly, drizzle in the olive oil. The mixture should look be loose, almost like a vinaigrette. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
To make the cauliflower: Soak wood chips in water at least 30 minutes before smoking.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. While the water is heating, fill a large bowl with ice water. Add the cauliflower to boiling water and cook until just tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Immediately transfer the cauliflower to the ice water to stop the cooking process. Once cauliflower is cool, drain the ice water and dry cauliflower thoroughly.
If using a gas grill, place the soaked wood chips inside an open packet of aluminum foil and place the foil directly on the grill’s heating mechanism. If using a charcoal grill or Kamado grill (such as Big Green Egg), add the wood chips to the coals over low heat. Once the chips are smoking, place the cauliflower directly on the grill grates and close the lid. Smoke over the lowest heat possible for 30 minutes. Transfer to a platter and serve with chimichurri sauce.