Rating: 5 stars
3 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 3
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 0
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 0

This simple and slightly spicy vegetarian supper holds its own as the star or a side. Toothsome and flavorful whole wheat spaghetti give great texture to a rich mix of cauliflower and red peppers, topped with toasty almond slivers and a bright parsley-olive blend. Serve with additional Pecorino Romano on the side.


Recipe Summary

15 mins
45 mins
1 hr
4 servings


Original recipe yields 4 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spread almonds and sesame seeds on a baking sheet.

  • Bake almonds and sesame seeds in the preheated oven until lightly toasted, about 10 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, pulse olives and parsley in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Transfer to a bowl.

  • Heat olive oil in a heavy 12-inch skillet over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add cauliflower and salt; cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes. Add bell pepper; cook until cauliflower is golden brown, about 8 minutes more. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Remove skillet from the heat.

  • Bring 6 to 8 quarts of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook spaghetti in the boiling water, stirring occasionally, until tender yet firm to the bite, about 12 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking water. Return to the pot.

  • Stir 1/4 cup pasta cooking water into the cauliflower mixture. Boil for 1 minute to deglaze the bottom of the skillet. Add olive mixture; cook and stir until heated through, about 2 minutes.

  • Pour cauliflower mixture over the spaghetti and toss well. Add Pecorino Romano and toss again. Moisten spaghetti with more cooking water if it appears dry. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and sesame seeds and serve immediately.

Cook's Notes:

My order of operations is kinda funky but if you do it right you should have nearly zero idle time and be done in about an hour.

Substitute Parmigiano-Reggiano for the pecorino Romano if desired.

Nutrition Facts

855 calories; protein 27.9g; carbohydrates 85.2g; fat 49.6g; cholesterol 15.5mg; sodium 1393.7mg. Full Nutrition