Week Five, Day Three

Today I have another cauliflower, actually two, so after spraying with food safe disinfectant and rinsing and drying ( all this social distancing, cleaning, spraying is getting to me, it takes too long !) I cut the cauliflower into florets bagged it and stuffed most of it into the refrigerator. I have a couple of ideas up my sleeve for the rest of it, but for some of it, a simple cauliflower cheese. Well maybe not that simple, but there is ham in the refrigerator crying out ” My Turn, Use Me’!

And so Cauliflower and Ham gratin was born. Luckily for me Himself likes it very much, Gourmet food, Strange and Wonderful food, Simple food and even the Bizarre, he likes it all, the perfect mate for me to  cook for, especially as most of time I don’t eat what I am cooking !!

I am sure that everyone knows how to make a basic white/cheese sauce, however, I am all for making things super easy and with as little fuss and as few dirty dishes to clean up as possible. Hence I make my sauces in the Microwave, it is fast and easy to clean up.

For a basic sauce ( just in case you don’t know)

  1. 15 grams (1oz) Butter
  2. 15gms ( 1oz ) cornflour , note I use cornflour and not flour
  3. 250 mls (1 1/4 us) Cups milk/ mixed or not with cream other milk substitutes can be used
  4. +/-50 grams grated cheese ( I use Emmental or Gruyère , but cheddar is fine)
  5. Pinch salt
  6. Pinch of English mustard powder.
  • Put the everything ( except the cheese) into a microwave safe bowl or wide neck jug and microwave on hig for two minutes. Remove and stir, repeat this until the sauce is thick. If by any chance it goes a bit lumpy simply whisk it, and it will be fine. Add the cheese and stir well.
  • And of course to make a white sauce,omit the cheese and mustard. To make more of this as the quantity is fairly small, simply multiply the amounts. For a cheese sauce for the cauliflower double is what I do. I nearly always add some cream ( especially as it is beginning to go off !) and of course salt and pepper to taste.
  • Then very simply cook your cauliflower ( again I use the microwave, more energy efficient and no nutrients are lost in ) boiling, put the cauliflower into your serving dish along with the hame, pour over the sauce, a quick stir and Bobs Your Uncle !
  • I subscribe to several foodie websites, some of them American and quite bizarrely this popped up yesterday, I was intrigued, I think my version sounds much nicer and more sophisticated !
  • This dump-and-stir casserole recipe could not be easier. Fresh thyme and smoked paprika give the cauliflower an nice flavour without the cream ! In a large bowl, combine the cauliflower, sour cream, half the cheese, paprika, thyme, salt and red pepper. Transfer the mixture to the prepared dish and sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top. Bake for 30 minutes, until the cheese is melted and the top is lightly browned. Serve immediately.

    So no sauce just the CREAM !

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