spaghetti with cauliflower, green olives and almonds

with my craving for cauliflower, i have found this recipe on epicurious and decided to do it. while making it everything seemed promising, but once i mixed the cauliflower with the pasta it came out too dry with not very flavorful. disappointed, i tried to find ways to save this dish by adding chopped cherry tomatoes and bit of lemon juice. these two ingredients were exactly what was missing, the sweetness of the tomatoes and their juice with the sourness of the lemon brought the dish to life.

1 1/4 cups pitted brine-cured green olives (plain or stuffed)
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup olive oil
1 (2 1/2-lb) head cauliflower, cut into 1-inch-wide florets (8 cups)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
scant 1/2 teaspoon dried hot red-pepper flakes
1/4 cup water
3/4 lb dried spaghetti or linguine
1 oz finely grated pecorino romano or parmigiano-reggiano (1/2 cup) plus additional for serving
3/4 cup whole almonds with skin (3 3/4 oz), toasted and coarsely chopped
cherry tomatoes cut in half
lemon juice from 1 lemon
pulse olives and parsley in a food processor until coarsely chopped. transfer to a bowl.
heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat until hot but not smoking, then cook cauliflower with salt, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. add garlic and red-pepper flakes and cook, stirring occasionally, until cauliflower is tender and garlic is golden, 3 to 5 minutes.
stir in water and boil 1 minute. add olive mixture and cook, stirring, until heated through, about 2 minutes.
meanwhile, cook pasta in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water. drain in a colander and return to pot.
add cauliflower mixture and toss well, then add cheese and toss again. add the tomatoes and lemon juice. if pasta is dry, moisten with some reserved cooking water or bit olive oil.
sprinkle pasta with almonds and serve immediately, with additional cheese on the side.

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