I made this Cauliflower Gratin for dinner last night and it's so much better than mac & cheese. Instead of plain old noodles, there's cauliflower... and lots of BACON. You'll want to cook the cauliflower a little first so that it doesn't take forever in the oven. But don't overcook it or it will be mushy. This recipe will serve 4-6 people. For 2-3 servings just half all the ingredients.
I modified the recipe by using a bit less cheddar in the sauce and substituting in some creamy Okanagan goat cheese that I had in the fridge. For the topping, I used Old Croc Extra Sharp Cheddar from Australia -- it has some serious bite. The combination of bacon, cheddar, onion and cauliflower is delicious. Try it.
- 1 large (or 2 small) head cauliflower, cut into bite size florets
- 4 tbsp. butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 3 cups half & half (10%) cream
- 300g (3 cups) sharp cheddar, shredded
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 8 slices bacon, cooked and chopped into pieces
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- In a large pot of salted boiling water, blanch cauliflower, 3 minutes. Drain and squeeze cauliflower of water.
- Make cheese sauce: In a large skillet, melt butter. Add onions and cook until fragrant, 2-3 minutes, then add flour and stir until golden, 2 minutes. Add cream and bring to a low simmer. Remove from heat and stir in half of cheddar until melted, then season with salt and pepper.
- Add drained cauliflower into cheese sauce and stir until combined. Stir in all half of cooked bacon until combined,
- Pour mixture into a shallow baking dish and then top with remaining cheddar and bacon.
- Bake until cauliflower is tender and cheese is golden, 30-40 minutes.