Cauliflower Gratin

05aCauliflowerGratinbfLOI’d picked up a head of cauliflower, fully intending to test out my theory that shooting the blended veggie and cheese mixture through a cookie gun onto a parchment lined baking sheet would make for bite size, and more universally crispity, cauliflower bread sticks; when I got busy reading a (very good) book and didn’t have time for that.

Of course, I still had the cauliflower, and we still needed a veggie to go with dinner…

Quick – to da Google!

01aCauliflowerLOAnd Bobby Flay provided.

Well, in truth, Mr. Flay and Guy Fieri both 01bCauliflowerCheesesbfLOprovided good foundations for roasting cauliflower, but Bobby’s called for heavy cream and cheeses I didn’t have in the cheese drawer, and Guy’s called for roasting, then puréeing the cauliflower. If I was gonna go out and pick up heavy cream and goat cheese, or take the time to roast, then purée the blasted veggie, I may as well just grab the cookie gun, revisit the bread ‘stick’ recipe, and get on with it.

SO, I did something different.

•1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
•2 cups whole milk
•12 oz marinated fresh mozzarella balls
•6 oz shaved Parmesan cheese
•1 (5.2 oz) pkg Boursin cheese, crumbled
•Salt and freshly ground pepper
•Snipped fresh chives

Note: don’t have marinated fresh mozzarella balls and Boursin in your cheese drawer? No worries! Try some sliced or shredded fresh mozz (or regular could work, too) and some crumbled goat cheese; then mebbe add a few Italian herbs and a light dab o’ garlic.

05bCauliflowerGratinbfLOPreheat oven to 400º.

Arrange the cauliflower in a 2-1/2 quart casserole or gratin dish, then add the mozzarella balls and crumbled Boursin.

Pour the milk over all, then add the shaved Parmesan and snipped chives.

Roast for about 30 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender and the sauce has thickened and gotten a little crusty brown on the edges.

06aCarolinaRibsCauliflowerbfLORemove from the oven and let rest for ten minutes before serving.

Really, really good! We had these with the Carolina-style pork, and I treated them as a combined veggie/starch side, but, ermmm, without the starch. I realize there’s a fair amount of cheese, and the whole milk – but! – the original recipe called for just as much cheese and heavy cream – and, I didn’t need to serve potatoes or rice or noodles or what have you, so I call that a decent trade.

For all you folk out there eschewing carbs, give this baby a try, I believe you will be very, very happy. Rich certainly was, he had seconds on the veggies, then was most well pleased to be served the leftovers with dinner the next night.

That doesn’t happen that often.

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