Cauliflower cheese deluxe

I made this for myself on Wednesday evening. I have to confess that ‘delux’ is bigging it up a bit – it was largely an exercise in using up things that I had in the fridge. Still, it was tasty though! I’d bought a cauliflower earlier in the week for a recipe but I hadn’t used even half of it so still had plenty left to form a core for this dish. I’ve always added a few extras to cauliflower cheese anyway – usually bacon and red onion, but this time I chucked in loads of other things as well. I bunged in some leek, red onion, red pepper, sprouts and sautéed, kale as well as various bits of meat. The recipe is a bit hit and miss and therefore not very precise, but the end result was tasty. Make it up as you go along!

Serves 1-2, depends how hungry you are!

1 cauliflower, cut into florets and the stems trimmed
1 leek, sliced
1 red onion, sliced
1 red pepper, de-seeded and diced
4 Brussels’s sprouts
3-4 rashers of bacon sliced
1-2 handfuls of kale, sautéed with garlic and lemon zest
40-50g of Spanish cured sausage, sliced (it’s not chorizo, but something else – the label says ‘Espetec’. Alberto always brings me a couple back from Spain whenever he goes. They’re delicious but not flavoured with paprika, like chorizo is.)

For the sauce:

1½ teaspoons of butter
1½ teaspoons of plain flour
200ml of milk
50ml of double cream
125g of mature cheddar, grated, plus a bit extra to sprinkle over the top.
1-2 teaspoons of wholegrain mustard
1 teaspoon of paprika

Pre-heat the oven to 200

Cook the cauliflower in boiling water for 10 minutes or so, until tender. Drain and place in an oven-proof dish. Cook the sliced sprouts in boiling water for 2-3 minutes until tender, drain and add to the

In a frying pan heat some garlic butter, along with a little olive oil, and sauté the kale, with lemon zest and freshly ground black pepper, for 2-3 minutes, until starting to crisp. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon, allowing most of the oil to drain off, and sprinkle over the cauliflower.

Wipe the pan clean, add a little fresh oil and return to the heat. Fry the bacon and cured sausage until crisp and then add to the cauliflower dish. Return the pan to the heat and fry the leek, red onion and red pepper, cooking for 3-4 minutes until starting to soften. Drain and add to the dish.

Mix all of the ingredients together well.

To make the sauce melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat and then add the flour. Stir quickly with a wooden spoon until the butter and flour are well combined into a roux. Gradually add the liquid, milk first and then the cream, stirring constantly to stir in the roux and leave you with a smooth sauce. Heat, whisking constantly as the sauce thickens. Add the mustard and paprika, stirring to ensure that they are well mixed through.

Add the grated cheese and stir until all of the cheese has melted.

Pour the sauce over the ingredients in the dish, grate a little more cheese over the top and then bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until bubbling and golden.





About neilche

Hi. My name's Neil. I live in Brighton with my flatmate (also Neil) and I work as a Librarian at a local college. I like cooking, eating and socialising with friends. Which is what prompted me to start this blog. I cycle everywhere around town - it helps to work off the calories!
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