Andrew Carmellini’s Spicy Roasted Cauliflower with Yogurt and Mint –

The Chef: Andrew Carmellini

His Restaurants: Locanda Verde and soon-to-open the Dutch, in New York City

What He’s Known For: Elevated but comforting Italian food; “Urban Italian,” the cookbook he wrote with his wife, Gwen Hyman

Over the past few years, Andrew Carmellini’s name has come to be synonymous with the cuisine of Italy. But lately the Cleveland native has been visiting American cities to learn about their foods. At the Dutch, Mr. Carmellini’s forthcoming restaurant set to open mid-December, he will showcase America’s culinary landscape with dishes that take cues from Korean BBQ joints in Los Angeles and roadside pancake houses in the Midwest.

For this Slow Food Fast recipe, Mr. Carmellini found inspiration in the Little India section of New York, where he used to live. “All those curry spices would just fill my tiny apartment and make everything smell so good,” he recalls.

Here, cauliflower is tossed with crushed fennel, curry and cumin, then roasted at a high temperature until it’s golden brown. Roasting brings out the vegetable’s nutty flavor. Mr. Carmellini grounds this spicy dish with a simple yogurt sauce that cools taste buds.

—Kitty Greenwald

Cool… huh?