Gio’s Cucina

“Welcome to Gio’s Cucina!”

-Chef John Ruggeri




Gio’s Cucina is your source for mouth watering recipes straight from Head Chef John Ruggeri’s Secret Recipe Book. Check back each month for a new dish!


Braised Cauliflower with Tomatoes

Ingredients for the Graham Cracker Crust

  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 6 garlic cloves, crushed and peeled
  • 1 large head cauliflower, cut into 2-inch florets, and any tender leaves coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup pitted oil-cured black olives, halved
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon peperoncino flakes
  • 28-ounce can Italian plum tomatoes, preferably San Marzano, crushed by hand
  • 1/4 cup drained tiny capers in brine
  • 8 large fresh basil leaves



Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the garlic, and let sizzle for a minute. Toss the cauliflower forgets and leaves, and stir to coat with the oil.

Sprinkle in the olives oregano, salt, and peperoncino, and stir. Pour in the tomatoes and capers, and bring the sauce to a rapid simmer. Cover, and cook 10 minutes. Uncover, and simmer until the cauliflower is tender and the sauce has thickened, about 10 to 12 minutes. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and tear the basil leaves into the skillet. Stir to combine, and serve hot.