"This is a lovely pasta dish to make if you feel like having a non-meat meal with clean, zingy flavours. If you are vegetarian or averse to anchovies, of course omit them from the recipe." Poh Ling Yeow, Poh & Co. 2






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (387 votes)


  • 160 g crusty bread, torn into bite-sized pieces
  • 100 ml olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 small head cauliflower, roughly chopped into 1 cm dice
  • 300 g orecchiette
  • salt
  • 40 g (¼ cup) kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 3 anchovy fillets, chopped
  • 50 g capers or caperberries
  • 1 tsp dried chilli flakes (optional)
  • 1 cup flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
  • 80 g (1 cup) roughly grated parmesan
  • finely grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • black pepper

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Preheat the oven to 120˚C.

Place the bread on a baking tray and bake for 15 minutes or until crisp. Set aside.

Place the olive oil and cauliflower in a large heavy-based non-stick frying pan over medium heat and cook for 8 minutes or until the cauliflower is tender and beginning to turn golden.

Cook the orecchiette in a saucepan of boiling salted water for 7 minutes or until al dente. Drain.

Meanwhile, add the olives, garlic, anchovy, capers, chilli flakes (if using) and a drizzle of olive oil to the pan of cauliflower and cook for a further 4–5 minutes or until the cauliflower is golden brown. Add the pasta and the parmesan and cook, using a wooden spatula to scrape the mixture from the base of the pan, turning to crisp the parmesan, for 4–5 minutes or until the parmesan bakes onto the base of the pan. Add the parsley and lemon zest and juice and season to taste with pepper.

Crumble the toasted crumbs over, then serve.


Photography, styling and food preparation by china squirrel.


View recipes and more from Poh & Co. on our program page.