Cauliflower gratin

By Camille Moore
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Cheesy vegetable casseroles are always a crowd pleaser for Thanksgiving, or at any occasion for that matter. What I love about this cauliflower version is that it uses the entire head of cauliflower (which we all know is often not the case with recipes, leaving us with more stuff to forget about in the backs of our fridges), and most of the prep work can be done a day or so in advance which is the best way to make hosting a dinner party a cinch. Boil the cauliflower in advance and refrigerate until needed. The only thing to do the day of is make the cheese sauce – which takes a few minutes – and bake it altogether right before serving.

SERVES
6
 TO
8
TOTAL TIME

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets (should yield about 8 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt (for boiling cauliflower)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin, ground
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
  • 1 cup swiss cheese, grated or chopped for easy melting
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 stem green onion, sliced
  • 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Once boiling add the cauliflower and salt, cook two minutes, drain well, and transfer to the baking dish.
  3. Using the same pot over medium heat, add one tablespoon of the butter, garlic and cumin. Cook, stirring constantly for one minute until fragrant. Whisk in flour and cook one minute while stirring. Add the milk, mustard powder, and cayenne, increase heat to medium-high and cook until thickened while whisking for about three minutes.
  4. Add Swiss cheese and stir until melted. Season with salt and green onion, then pour over cauliflower in baking dish to evenly cover.
  5. In a small bowl combine the remaining butter, panko, and Parmesan. Sprinkle over casserole and bake 15 minutes in preheated oven until bubbly and golden brown on top. Serve immediately.

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