Silky-Smooth Vegetarian Pâté With Roasted Cauliflower and Pecans Recipe

Ingredients

  • 2 ounces pecans (about 1/2 cup; 60g)
  • 1 head cauliflower (2 pounds; 925g), trimmed and cut into florets
  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) extra-virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter (see note)
  • 1 large yellow onion (8 ounces; 225g), thinly sliced
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup (60ml) brandy
  • 1 cup (235ml) heavy cream (see note)
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 teaspoon (5ml) soy sauce

Directions

  1. In a bowl, cover pecans with at least 1 inch water and let soak for 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 500°F (260°C). Place cauliflower on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet, toss with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast, flipping cauliflower with a thin metal spatula halfway through roasting, until tender and deeply browned on both sides, about 20 minutes total.
  3. In a large saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, and cayenne and cook, stirring often, until softened and just starting to turn golden, about 4 minutes. Add brandy and cook until completely evaporated.
  4. Add cauliflower, cream, and thyme. Drain pecans and add to saucepan. Bring to a simmer, then cook, adjusting heat to maintain simmer, until cauliflower has softened and liquid has reduced to about 3/4 cup, about 10 minutes. Discard thyme sprig. Add soy sauce.
  5. Using a blender or immersion blender, blend cauliflower and liquid to form a very smooth purée. Season with salt and pepper. To chill rapidly, spread vegetarian pâté in a thin, even layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet (a quarter-sheet size is best for this), then press plastic wrap directly against pâté’s surface, pushing out any air. Otherwise, transfer pâté to a heatproof container and press plastic directly against surface. Refrigerate until well chilled. Transfer to a serving vessel and serve with crackers 

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