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    Cauliflower cheese with gruyère and beer

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    Cauliflower cheese with gruyère and beer

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes, plus resting
    • Cooking time: 1 hour 5 minutes
    • Total time: 1 hour 25 minutes, plus resting

    Serves: 4


    1 large cauliflower, (about 800g) trimmed and separated into large florets
    2 tbsp olive oil
    400ml semi-skimmed milk
    40g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
    40g plain flour
    100ml pale lager (such as Heineken or Budweiser)
    1 tsp dijon mustard
    ½ tsp worcestershire sauce
    1 heaped tbsp crème fraîche
    150g gruyère, grated 
    30g parmesan, finely grated


    1. Preheat the oven to 200˚C, gas mark 6. Toss the cauliflower florets with the oil, season and spread out on a large baking tray. Roast for 30 minutes, turning halfway, until browned and tender. Reduce the oven to 190˚C, gas mark 5.

    2. Meanwhile, put the milk in a small pan and heat gently until just steaming, but not boiling. Melt the butter in a second, larger pan set over a low-medium heat. Stir in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. Swap to a balloon whisk and gradually add the hot milk, whisking gently to create a smooth sauce. Gradually add the lager and bring to the boil. Simmer gently for 6-7 minutes, stirring, until very thick. Season and remove from the heat. Immediately stir in the mustard, worcestershire sauce, crème fraîche and ½ the gruyère. Cover and set aside.

    3. Butter a medium-sized ovenproof dish. Pile in the roast cauliflower and spoon over the cheese sauce. Scatter with the parmesan and the remaining 75g gruyère. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Rest for 5-10 minutes before serving with salad and/or baked potatoes, if liked.


    Cook’s tip
    It’s important to add the hot milk to the flour and butter very slowly to start with. Once you have a smooth mixture, you can add it more quickly.

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    This recipe first appeared in Waitrose Food, February 2018 issue. Download the Waitrose Food app for the full issue


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