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Seared Chicken Breasts With Roasted-Cauliflower Puree

Cauliflower is at its best during fall and winter, and roasting it is one way to bring out its deepest, richest flavor. Add creamy roasted garlic and chicken broth for an easy, delicious addition to pan-seared chicken.

Note: While raw cauliflower is virtually white, roasting it turns the florets a wonderful caramel brown color, so the puree will reflect that hue-and include tiny flecks of charred vegetable as well.

Seared Chicken Breasts With Roasted-Cauliflower Puree
Serves: 4
  • For the Sauce
  • 1 small cauliflower head, cut into medium florets (about ¾ lb total of florets)
  • olive oil for drizzling
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 garlic cloves, wrapped in foil
  • 1-1/2 cups chicken broth (more or less, as needed)
  • For the Chicken
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 6-oz boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, lightly pounded to an even thickness
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • steamed Brussels sprouts, for serving (optional)
  1. For the Sauce
  2. Preheat the oven to 400° F.
  3. Line a large baking pan with parchment paper and place the cauliflower on it. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine and spread out on the pan.
  4. Place the foil-wrapped garlic cloves in the middle of the pan and place in the oven. Roast 20 minutes. Remove the foil packet and let cool.
  5. Stir the cauliflower and continue roasting until the florets are soft and browned in places. Remove and let cool to room temperature.
  6. Place the florets in a food processor. Unwrap the garlic cloves and squeeze the pulp from each into the processor with the cauliflower. Process until finely chopped.
  7. Add the chicken broth ½ cup at a time and process until the puree is thin and creamy. Place in a nonstick skillet and warm over low heat while the chicken cooks.
  8. For the Chicken
  9. Heat a heavy (preferably cast-iron) skillet over medium heat and add the oil. Season the chicken with oregano, salt, and pepper, and sear until golden brown on the bottom, 4-5 minutes.
  10. Turn and sear until golden on the other side and cooked through, 4-5 minutes longer, depending on thickness. Remove and let rest 5 minutes.
  11. To serve, divide the puree and spread on half of 4 plates. Place a chicken breast on top of each and serve steamed Brussels sprouts alongside, if desired.