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Roasted Cauliflower & Thyme Risotto with Lemon Pangritata

Roasted-cauliflower & thyme risotto with lemon pangritata

30-40 min


  1. 300 g arborio or similar risotto rice
  2. 1 onion, finely chopped
  3. 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  4. 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  5. 1/2 tbsp fresh thyme or lemon thyme
  6. 1/2 tsp sea salt
  7. glass white wine
  8. 1.2 litres vegetable stock
  9. 20 g organic butter
  10. 30 g vegetarian Parmesan (I used Mangiagratta)
  11. juice of 1 lemon (use the zest for the pangritata, below)

For the pangritata

  1. 30 g fresh ciabatta breadcrumbs
  2. zest of 1 lemon
  3. 1/2 tbsp fresh thyme or lemon thyme
  4. 25 g butter

To Serve

  1. a few fresh thyme leaves, chopped thyme flowers


  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C (325°F, gas mark 3).
  2. Place the cauliflower florets in a baking tray and pour on one tablespoon of the olive oil. Mix to combine, ensuring all of the cauliflower florets are coated in oil. Put the tray in the pre-heated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until the florets are browned. Remove from the oven and drain the florets on kitchen paper.
  3. While the cauliflower florets are roasting, make the pangritata. Heat the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. As soon as it starts to bubble, add the breadcrumbs. Stir to ensure all the breadcrumbs are in contact with the butter. Continue to stir until the breadcrumbs are light golden brown and crisp, which should take no more than 2 minutes. Immediately remove from the heat, stir in the lemon and chopped thyme and the tip the pangritata onto kitchen paper to drain. Set to one side.
  4. Now for the risotto. Bring the stock to a boil then reduce to a low simmer. Put the remaining tablespoon of olive oil into a large pan over a medium flame. When hot, add the chopped onion and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent. Add the garlic, stir and cook for a further minute before adding the rice. Stir to ensure all the grains of rice have contact with the oil.
  5. Now turn up the heat and pour in the wine, stirring to deglaze. Add the sea salt and a ladle of stock and then reduce the heat back to medium. Keep stirring, adding a ladleful of stock whenever the rice starts to look dry. Continue to cook, adding stock a ladleful at a time in this way, until the rice is “al dente”. You may not need to use all of the stock to reach this stage.
  6. As soon as the rice is cooked, which will take around 20-25 minutes, add the lemon juice, thyme, roast cauliflower, butter and Parmesan, stirring quickly to combine into the risotto, then remove from the heat. Divide the risotto between plates or bowls. Scatter over some of the lemon pangritata and a pinch of the chopped thyme leaves and thyme flowers.

Recipe & photo from Steve Dent AKA The Circus Gardener’s Kitchen