Cauliflower Cheese, delicious I promise!

Cauliflower Cheese

One of the side dishes I go for every year when planning the big Christmas day dinner is always Cauliflower Cheese. It’s never ever a vegetable that I or the kids would eat in a regular week yet its devoured annually, right next to the sprouts! I’m going to make an effort to throw this dish together more often this coming year… here’s the lowdown:

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cauliflower about 1lb 8oz when trimmed into florets
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 4 oz streaky bacon cut into strips OR bacon lardoons
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 450ml milk
  • 4 oz cheddar cheese, finely grated
  • A good grating of nutmeg (I used dried)
  • 1 tbsp Parmesan, grated
  • Salt & Pepper

Method:

  1. Cook the cauliflower in a saucepan of salted boiling water for 4 or 5 minutes, it should still be firm. Drain and place in a hot serving dish to keep warm.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat & fry the onion, garlic and bacon for 5 or 6 minutes until the onion is caramelised and golden and the bacon is crisp.
  3. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat, stir in the flour. Cook for 1 minute while stirring continually. Remove from the heat and stir in the milk very gradually until smooth. Return to a low heat and stir until the sauce comes to the boil & thickens.
  4. Simmer gently, stirring constantly for about 3 minutes until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Remove from the heat and stir in the Cheddar and nutmeg. Season to taste.
  5. Spoon the onion and bacon over the cauliflower and pour over the hot sauce. Top the dish with the Parmesan cheese and place under a hot grill to brown. Serve immediately.
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The recipe comes from a lovely book I picked up somewhere years ago, its tatty and used and a bit sticky so that’s a sign of a good cook book!

“The Beginners Cookbook” by Pamela Gwyther.

 


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