This gratin is like no other! A creamy, cheesy sauce is topped with cauliflower and breadcrumbs.
The flavor combination in this dish is absolutely divine!
I had no idea how simple a gratin could be until I set out to make this recipe. I assumed a gratin was an involved, ultra heavy and rich tasting potato dish; similar to an easy scalloped potato recipe. We don’t need more potato recipes this time of year, after all, it is really hard to compete with mashed potatoes at Thanksgiving (especially these Cheesy Mashed Potatoes!)
A Note About Gratin
A gratin is most often made with potatoes AND it also features a sauce made with egg and cheese. The key component to a gratin, however, is the breadcrumb topping that broils up crispy and golden. This cauliflower gratin differs in one way; the cauliflower. I love using cauliflower in dishes such as this because it has such a mild flavor that works well with so many herbs, spices, and other ingredients. In this dish, the cauliflower absorbs the flavor the sauce and is thoroughly enhanced by the breadcrumb topping.
How To Make Gratin
This dish is simple, you start by letting the cauliflower cook for just a few minutes. While the cauliflower is cooking begin making your sauce. You make a simple roux with butter, flour, and milk and whisk in white cheddar cheese. You could swap out the white cheddar if you prefer. I like the intensity the white cheddar lends this dish. I think it beefs up the taste of cauliflower but gruyere or fontina would be nice substitutes as would straight Parmesan cheese. Pour your sauce into the bottom of your baking dish, top with the cauliflower and the breadcrumb/Parmesan coating.
This is an elegant and impressive way to serve up cauliflower. You are going to love it!
More Cauliflower Dishes
- 1 head cauliflower
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 cup milk
- 3/4 cup shredded white cheddar cheese ( I used Cabot Cheese)
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs
- 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a gratin dish or an 8 x 8 baking dish with non-stick spray and set aside.
Cut cauliflower into florets and boil for 3 minutes, drain. Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan. Whisk in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk until mixture has combined and begins to thicken. Whisk in the white cheddar, garlic, and pepper until smooth.
Pour sauce onto the bottom of the dish and top with the cauliflower. In a bowl combine the breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and thyme. Stir in olive oil. Sprinkle mixture over the top of the gratin.
Bake the gratin for 30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and the top is slightly golden.
Amount Per Serving Calories 0Total Fat 0gSaturated Fat 0gCholesterol 0mgSodium 0mgFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 0g