Saturday, October 07, 2006

Rainy, Cold Day Cauliflower Recipe

It's been rainy and cold since Thursday here. Miserable weather outside! Today we took a little road trip, but we were glad to get home. I love cold weather for the very fact that it is the perfect reason to curl up under a blanket, read a book, watch a movie, or just curl up with some-body! We're about to pop in Disc 3 of Arrested Development, but as long as football's still on, I have a chance to share something with you.

This recipe is one of my favorite cold day comfort-food recipes. It's from Ina Garten's Barefoot in Paris, and it's the very reason I purchased her cookbook in the first place. Usually, I purchase one of those Ready-to-Eat roasted chickens, a head of cauliflower, and a few handfuls of fresh green beans on days when I want something yummy, but don't want to spend too long in the kitchen.

Keep the chicken warm; clean and prep the green beans for cooking (I usually just throw them in the steamer).

Cauliflower Gratin
serves 4-6

1 (3 lb.) head cauliflower, cut into large florets
kosher salt
4 TBsp unsalted butter, divided in half
3 TBsp all-purpose flour
2 cups hot milk
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 grated Gruyere, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 fresh bread crumbs

1. Preheat the oven to 375. (This is a good time to heat that milk!)
2. Cook the cauliflower florets in a large pot of boiled salted water for 5-6 minutes, until tender but still firm. Drain.
3. Meanwhile, in a med. sized saucepan, melt 2 TBsp butter over low heat.
4. Add the flour. Stir constantly with a wooden spoon for 2 mins.
5. Pour the milk into the butter-flour mixture and stir until it comes to a boil.
6. Boil, whisking constantly for 1 min. or until thickened.
7. Off the heat, add 1 tsp. salt, the pepper, nutmeg, 1/2 cup Gruyere, and the Parmesan.
8. Pour on third of the sauce on the bottom of an 8x11x2 inch baking dish. Place the drained cauliflower on top and then spread the rest of the sauce evenly on top.
9. Combine the bread crumbs and remaining 1/4 cup Gruyere.
10. Sprinkle on top.
11. Melt the remaining 2 TBsp butter and drizzle over the gratin. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
12. Bake for 25-30 min. or until browned.
13. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Hope you try it, you'll love it! Dont' be scared off by the number of steps, it really is pretty easy. Only thing is, while you're doing steps 4-6, you really don't want to walk away; as long as you stir, you won't burn it! 10 minutes, tops to prepare the whole thing (except the time it takes your water to boil to cook the florets).

1 comment:

Kim said...

I LOVE that cookbook! OK, so I haven't really cooked many things from it (though there is one roast chicken recipe in there that is really tasty!), but I love to flip through it and pretend I'm all Frenchy.

I'll have to try this recipe. How is the Gruyere? I'm all for stinky cheese, usually, but we made something out of Gruyere one time and it smelled so much like stinky socks that we could hardly eat it! Is this a stinky recipe?

I'm a big fan of cauliflower, oddly enough.