Cauliflower Pesto

Serve this ingenious spread from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook atop slices of toasted Kalamata olive bread.

4 heads baby cauliflower
1 medium shallot
Pinch of red pepper flakes
½ cup toasted almonds
¼ cup Grana-style cheese
4 sun-dried tomatoes, dry variety
1 tablespoons drained capers
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
½ cup olive oil
1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

1. In a small bowl, place sun dried tomatoes and add boiling water to cover. Let stand 5 minutes to soften, then drain.

2. Rinse the cauliflower, cut off the leaves and hard stalks. Cut the rest into chunks, and put in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Process until florets are thoroughly chopped, about the size of couscous. Transfer to a bowl.

3. Without rinsing the bowl of the processor, add the shallots, pepper flakes, almonds, cheese, drained and chopped sun-dried tomatoes, capers and parsley. Process until fine. Add oil and vinegar and pulse until a paste forms.

4. Transfer to the bowl with the cauliflower, mixing gently. Check for seasonings, adding more salt and pepper as necessary. Refrigerate in a covered container until ready to use.

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