Cauliflower Au Gratin

A great side dish or even a meal if you add hard-boiled eggs.  This specific photo is without the eggs.

cauwlflower au gratin

The first step is to cut up one whole cauliflower and blanch the florets or steam for just a bit, don’t cook entirely.  Put the semi cooked cauliflower in a nice pan or casserole dish to bake.  Turn the oven on to 350 F.

Next make a home-made bechamel sauce.  This requires a lot of attention and stirring.  Once your bechamel sauce is done, pour it into the pan with the cauliflower.  Top off the dish with some grated Gruyère cheese and a bit of grated parmesan.  Bake for 30 mins and turn the heat up to 400 bake for 10 more minutes so the cheese gets browned.  If you want to turn this into a meal you can place 4 hard-boiled eggs cut in half on top of the cauliflower mixture and then add cheese.

 

Cauliflower
Cauliflower (Photo credit: Indiana Public Media)

Ingredients:  1 head of cauliflower

1 cup grated Gruyère Cheese

3 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Parmesan Cheese (or more accurately, Parmigian...
Parmesan Cheese (or more accurately, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

For the béchamel: 1 teaspoon salt, 2 teaspoons fresh grated nutmeg, 3 cups whole milk, 4 tablespoons butter, 3 tablespoons flour.

To make the béchamel.  Put the 3 cups of milk to heat in a pot keep warm and don’t let it boil, turn as heat as low as possible.  In a pot melt the butter and add the 3 tablespoons of flour, stirring constantly until you form a nice colored roux.  approximately 3 mins of stirring.  Add little by little the warm milk by constantly stirring. Once all the milk is mixed in, continue to stir and get the bechamel bubbling.  If it’s thin at first, don’t worry, it will eventually thicken.  Once it’s the consistency of heavy cream you can remove from heat.  Stir in the salt, Nutmeg and mix in about 1/2 cup of the grated Gruyère cheese ( or a good swiss cheese).  Poor it over your cauliflower.  Make sure all the florets  are covered.  Then add the remaining 1/2 cup Gruyère and sprinkle about 3 tablespoons of parmesan cheese.  Bake!  It’s a great dish to bring to  pot luck, to have as a side with meat, fish, poultry, great for Thanksgiving and other holiday dinners.  And again, you can make this the main dish by added hard-boiled eggs cut in half.  Enjoy-yum

 

 

Advertisements

Floating islands

Whisking egg whites
Whisking egg whites (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Crème anglaise made from milk, eggs, sugar and...

This was the most amazing and simple dessert I made.  During our stay in France, we were at a cafe eating lunch.  My husband and son didn’t want a dessert, fine for them, I was thinking I’m going back to the states in 4 weeks, time to eat up all the wonderful things possible on this visit.  I ordered l’ile flottante a lovely french desert.  It arrived at the table and my husband was curious and took a bite.  Basically it’s a big poof cloud on a liquid creme anglaise.  It’s so delicious.  He gobbled up most of my desert.  My son only 6 still scared of liquidy looking, strange things passed on it.  I decided I needed to try it at home back in Los Angeles.  I searched on line for many different recipes.  I found some that added corn starch or other things.  I knew it was a very simple desert, so finally I found one that just asked for 1.5 cups of milk, a split vanilla pod, 3 eggs separated and 115 grams of castor sugar.  Voila.  I found it and made it.

I did what they said.  Beat the egg whites, add a pinch

of salt until the eggs have firm peaks.  Continue beating the eggs while slowly adding 40 grams of sugar.  The eggs can be either put in boiling water or do what I did… 45 seconds in the microwave which is totally unheard of for me.  I don’t like microwaves, but I am a horrible egg poacher, I just couldn’t see how I could do egg whites.  So I thickened out, oh no, sounds bad while talking about eggs.  Anyway, I used the fast, microwave route.  They were perfect. I put them on a plate and in the fridge to keep.  I then made my custard.  Or wait, I made my custard first, but I don’t think it matters.  I heated the milk over a low heat with the vanilla pod slip in it.  I took out most of the seeds and added it mixing the milk.  Heat the milk till it bubbles a bit then remove from heat.  In a bowl mix the egg yolks and 75 grams of sugar.  Then pour the hot milk on this egg mixture.  Mix well.  Pour the mixture into a clean saucepan, add heat over low heat for 5 minutes stirring constantly.  It shouldn’t boil!  After a few minutes the custard will thickened a bit, but thicken even more in the fridge.  Place it all in fridge.  Try and find fun bowls, martini glasses, whatever you have to make the desert look wonderful.  Add the vanilla bean as a garnish.  This was too good and not bad for you.  The ingredients are so simple

1.5 cups milk, 3 eggs, 115 grams sugar and a vanilla pod-easy and yummy