Cauliflower and cheese are a fabulous combination. Baked and served hot with the melted cheese, it makes a wonderfully delicious and satisfying dish. This simple and yet tasty winter warmer can accompany both meat or be served as a vegetarian dish. Give it a try, if you like cauliflower and cheese you won’t be disappointed.
300 ml cream
120 grams Blue Cheese (crumbled)
250 grams Smoked Mozzarella Cheese (grated)
3-4 tablespoons of Parmesan Cheese (grated)
2 cloves garlic (crushed)
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
salt & freshly ground black pepper
Preparation Time: 20 minutes (approximately)
Cooking Time: 20-30 minutes (approximately)
Serves: 4-6 people
Preheat the oven to 180°C for at least 15 minutes. Prepare a 20 x 24 cm ceramic oven dish.
Remove the leaves and end from the cauliflower, wash, pat dry and cut into florets. Place the florets in a kitchen whizz on high speed to chop into rice like grainy pieces. Do this in a few batches not to overcrowd and be left with large lumpy pieces. Put in bowl and place aside.
In a pan large enough add the oil over medium heat and saute the garlic for one minute (ensure that it doesn’t brown or burn) add the cauliflower and cook for five minutes stirring to ensure that it cooks a little and combines with the garlic. Add the cream and stir through the cauliflower and cook for a further minute. Turn the heat off and place aside.
Spoon half the mixture into the ceramic dish, evenly scatter the mozzarella, crumbled pieces of the blue cheese. Add the remaining cauliflower mixture on top, spread with mozzarella and crumbled blue cheese. Place in the hot oven for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes take the cauliflower bake out of the oven and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese, place back in the oven for a further 10 to 15 minutes to create a golden crust on top. Remove from the oven and allow to settle for a few minutes and serve immediately.
For this recipe I used a creamy blue cheese from King Island (Roaring Forties Blue). You can use other varieties for this dish such as Stilton, Gorgonzola, Roquefort or Danish Blue. Feel free to select your own combination. The smokey Mozzarella adds a wonderful light smokey flavour to the dish and the Parmesan forms a light crust.
Process the cauliflower florets a few batches at a time so not to overcrowd the bowl of your kitchen whizz. When processed they will resemble grains of rice. If you have a few larger pieces it will be fine as they will cook through during the baking.
Another serving suggestion for this dish is as a starter served hot with crusty bread and a glass of wine or alternatively if you live in the warmer climates allow the cauliflower bake to cool down completely and then serve with crusty bread or as an accompaniment to meat or other dishes.