I do love a good cauliflower cheese as a midweek supper with some fat brown sausages on the side. To ring the changes, add some steamed leeks or broccoli to the cauliflower cheese, a gratin layer of thin chorizo slices and breadcrumbs topped with Gruyere and you’ve got another really substantial and delicious version that I’m sure you’ll make time and again. I originally made this because I had a pack of sliced salami in the fridge that needed using up but now I buy chorizo slices especially for it as we like it so much. This serves 2 generously – just scale up the quantities and the size of the gratin dish for more portions. You could even mix in some cooked small pasta shapes to make it go further.
- 1 small cauliflower broken into florets
- 1 large leek, washed and cut into 1cm thick rings
- 500 ml milk
- 80g grated strong cheese e.g. cheddar, 20g grated Gruyere
- 3tbsp plain flour
- 50g unsalted butter
- Salt and white pepper
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsps Panko bread crumbs
- 70g pack of thinly sliced chorizo
- Preheat the oven to 220C.
- Steam the cauliflower and leeks for 10 minutes. Drain and allow to air dry.
- Meanwhile, make the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a non-stick pan. Add the flour and create a smooth paste. Allow it to cook out for a few minutes, stirring constantly. Add the milk gradually, keep whisking so that you have a smooth thick sauce. Add the cheese – it will melt as you whisk it in. Remove from the heat and add the seasoning – the mustard will bring out the cheese flavour, add a little extra salt and white pepper to taste.
- Mix the cauliflower and leek mixture with the cheese sauce.
- Butter a gratin dish and pour in the vegetables and cheese sauce. Tap the dish to ensure that the mixture fills the dish to the edge and is as level as possible.
- Arrange the chorizo slices around the edge of the gratin dish. Scatter over the bread crumbs and the Gruyere.
- Bake in the oven for 20 minutes or until the crust is golden and bubbling.
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