Autumnal nights are here again. This comforting cauliflower cheese dish ticks all of the boxes for when the nights are dark and temperatures have dropped.
Lockdown part two – Comfort Foods
Two weeks into lockdown part two and I have to admit, I’m missing my social life. I’m not exactly a party animal (far from it) but I do enjoy meeting up for coffee and food. In fact, I feel that I would have been at the forefront of cafe society back in the 19th century, as my passion for hanging around coffee shops is so strong. (is that weird? don’t answer!)
Thankfully, these colder nights give us all permission to indulge in hearty and warming foods. You know the ones. (Our repertoire includes homemade chillis, slow-cooked beef stews and roasted squash amongst others). I love these dishes, they’re so easy and satisfying and they’re perfectly paired with cosy lighting and an ice-cold glass of white wine or a full-bodied glass of red. They really are comfort foods.
So whilst we’re aren’t allowed to meet up with other at the moment and sadly the Summer sunshine has gone, we do have home comfort!
The humble cauliflower
As you may know, I really do hate wasting food (see one of my earlier posts (Love food hate waste) and so each week there comes a time when I look around the fridge and vegetable rack and decide what needs to be used asap. This week, we had cauliflower, squash and some leeks (fast approaching the end of their lives). It might not be the most imaginative of meals but when it comes to delicious and warming comfort food, cauliflower cheese is surely in the top ten isn’t it?.
Although I do make good cauliflower cheese, I have to admit that Andrew made this and it was fab! It’s particularly calorific (which is probably why it’s so good), oozes cheese and is topped with breadcrumbs for a nice crunchy texture. It’s altogether positively divine. We also roasted off the other vegetables we had (including the leeks) and drizzled over some chilli oil. All in all, a real crowdpleaser of a meal. It doesn’t need anything else with it (but sometimes we do – because as we’re a little greedy!)
- cauliflower 1 large, broken into large florets
- olive oil 1 tbsp
- butter 75g
- plain flour 4 tbsp
- whole milk 400ml
- double cream 400ml
- strong cheddar 150g, grated
- Gruyere cheese 75g, grated
- breadcrumbs 50g
Heat oven (200 degrees fan, 220 standard electric, gas mark 7)
First off, par boil the cauliflower and place the florets into an oven dish.
Make a roux with the butter and olive oil and flour (add the milk and cream slowly, stirring continuously to avoid lumps)
When you have smooth velvety sauce, start adding the cheese, gently stirring it all in. Add salt and pepper according to taste
When all the cheese has melted into the sauce, pour over the cauliflower.
Sprinkle over the breadcrumbs
Cook in the oven for 25 minutes until golden and bubbling
Keep safe everyone, Helen, Feistic