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Friday, December 16, 2011

Cauliflower Casserole

Once again, the lovely Giada De Laurentiis has given me a great recipe. Of course I was unable to find some of the ingredients... so what can a girl do but improvise? Even if your not very fond of this vegetable, you should give it a try. Completely changes the taste with the sauce, and my hunny found that adding some shredded Colby to it really brings out the flavors. This recipe serves about 6-8 folks.

1 Cauliflower Head, cut up (about 6 cups)
1-2 Smoked Cheddar Sausage links (depending on how meaty you want this), diced small
*** Or try to add some ground Italian Sausage for a nice twist, just brown it up before hand***
1/4 cup Butter
1/4 cup Flour
2 cup Milk (1 1/2 cup if living in the low lands)
1 tsp Garlic, minced
1 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
1 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
1/4 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Black Pepper, freshly ground
1/4 tsp Nutmeg, freshly grated
Bread Crumbs
Parsley, dried

1) Heat oven to 350. Using butter flavored "Pam" spray casserole dish (I used an over sized loaf pan, but any will do as long as the cooked cauliflower is 1" from the top).

2) Heat large pot of salted boiling water and blanch cauliflower for about 2 minutes (way up here your gonna have to go about 4-5 minutes), drain and pour into prepared dish. Let cool while you make the rest.

3) In large skillet, heat sausage until browned, remove from skillet and set aside.

4) In same skillet, melt butter. Add flour and stir to combine. Cook about 2 minutes until the mixture begins to turn golden, continuously stirring. Slowly add the milk, a little at a time, stirring until its smooth as silk. Stir in garlic and red pepper flakes. Keep stirring a couple minutes until the sauce coats the back of a wooden spoon. Add parmesan, salt, pepper, nutmeg and sausage, stir to combine. At this point, if the sauce is really thick, add a little more milk. You should be able to pour it out on top of the cauliflower to cover it. Sprinkle top with bread crumbs and parsley.

5) Bake until crumbs turn golden brown and cauliflower is tender, about 25 minutes.

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