I had 8 cauliflower plants growing in my garden. The operative word being “had”. I went out one morning to find the tops eaten off of every one of them. All that was left were the base leaves. Incorrectly, I blamed the bunnies and tried to figure out how they were getting into the garden, there were no visible gaps in the fencing. We tightened up the fencing just to be sure. A few days ago, my husband came in and said, “it wasn’t the rabbits, it was the groundhog.” How? There were definitely not gaps big enough for a groundhog. “It didn’t go through or under, it went over!” He caught it in the act in the garden and it scurried off, up and over the fence. Who knew? I guess they should be called climbing hogs, not ground hogs. Not sure how to defend agains it, other than to run out yelling at it any time I see it (or sending the dog to chase it back into the woods).
So, instead of making this with cauliflower from my garden, I bought some from the farm market. This sandwich is definitely a meal, a very tasty one. My 6 year old wouldn’t try it, he preferred regular grilled cheese, but my husband and I enjoyed it a lot. Cauliflower, pears, provolone, mustard, smoked paprika….yum! And with the ciabatta bread I was able to turn them into great paninis. Crisp outsides and soft, gooey inside…did I say yum yet?
Roasted Cauliflower Melt
Inspired and adapted from Jeff Mauro
1 head of cauliflower, cut into 1 inch thick steaks.
1/4 cup olive oil
1-2 tsp maple mustard (or dijon)
2 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 cup maple mustard
1 Tbsp stone ground mustard
1 Tbsp honey (local)
Provolone cheese, sliced (2 slices per sandwich, or more if you want)
1 pear, sliced
4 Ciabatta rolls
Heat oven to 450F.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, 1-2 tsp maple mustard, and smoked paprika. Paint the cauliflower with the sauce, getting the sauce into all the nooks and crannies. Place the cauliflower on a baking tray.
Roast for 10 minutes, flip and roast for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven.
While the cauliflower is roasting, mix together the two remaining mustards and the honey.
Slice the ciabatta rolls and spread the mustard mixture liberally on the bottom of each roll. Cover with one of he provolone slices and then cauliflower.
Top with the sliced pear and remaining provolone.
Melt some butter on a griddle or pan over medium heat. Cook each sandwich, with a grill press or other weight on it.
Cook until the bottom is browned. Flip and cook until the cheese is melted and the outside is browned.
Serve and enjoy!