Move over traditional brunch. This cauliflower-pancetta brunch casserole is make ahead, full of flavor and texture and lends itself to substitution and experimentation so it can be tweaked seasonally and to personal tastes. Essentially, a whole head of cauliflower is oven roasted with red onion and diced pancetta for a half hour. The cauliflower provides tons of fiber and stands in for more traditional potatoes in this hash-like dish. Totally gluten and carb free, it will appeal to many diets. The fun starts when it comes out of the oven! Top it with fresh tomatoes, feta, herbs and an egg, cooked to measure for each person. The pancetta adds a salty crunch to the mild cauliflower while the sweet red onion caramelizes nicely and infuses the dish with great flavor. Adding fresh tomatoes brightens the dish and gives it some color and juicyness. Want to keep it vegetarian? Omit the pancetta. This was so tasty on a lazy We morning. I hope you enjoy it too!
Roasted Cauliflower-Pancetta Brunch Casserole
- 1 whole cauliflower cut into flowerlets
- 1 cup of red onion, thinly sliced
- 4 oz diced pancetta
- 2 T olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Toppings: chopped fresh tomatoes, chopped fresh herbs, crumbled feta cheese
- Preheat oven to 400F. In a shallow baking dish, spread 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Spread half the onions and half the pancetta on the bottom and scatter the cauliflower on top. Spread the second tablespoon of olive oil on the cauliflower. Sprinkle with the remaining onion and pancetta. Season with a few turns of the pepper mill and a bit of salt. The dish can be made ahead to this point and refrigerated. Bring to room temperature before baking. Roast on a low rack for 30 minutes, stirring to prevent burning a few times. If you prefer, you can also make the dish on the stove top in a large skillet as you would any hash.
- Sprinkle the dish with chopped fresh tomatoes, herbs and crumbled feta and top each serving with an egg cooked to measure.
This recipe was inspired by Angela at the great The Spinach Tiger blog, original recipe here.