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Cauliflower Cheese

Posted in Food with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 20, 2011 by Robin Gosnall

1 large head cauliflower
8 tbsp butter
10 tbsp plain flour
2 pints whole milk
salt & pepper
freshly grated nutmeg to taste
2 rashers bacon, diced
200g smoked cheddar, grated
200g breadcrumbs

Break the cauliflower into florets. Steam it for 15 minutes until tender, and set aside and keep warm.

Sauté the diced bacon in a wok on high heat until crispy – then remove from wok with slotted spoon (so fat is drained) and set aside. Reserve bacon grease for other uses.

Make a béchamel sauce: melt a stick of butter in a pan over a moderate heat and then stir in flour a spoonful at a time until you have a thick paste (a roux). Cook the roux for a couple of minutes, stirring, stirring all the time and watch it expand. Slowly add milk and keep stirring until you have a smooth, thick sauce. You may want to switch to using a whisk. Season to taste with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Gradually stir in two-thirds of the grated cheese. Save the rest to sprinkle on top.

Put the cauliflower into a baking dish and then pour the sauce over it. Then, sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. In a small saucepan, melt 3-4 tbsp butter and then mix it through the breadcrumbs to moisten them. Sprinkle the buttered breadcrumbs on top.

Bake at 200°C for 30 minutes or until breadcrumbs are browned and casserole is bubbling. Sprinkle the reserved bacon on top when it comes out of the oven, and serve.

Celeriac and Lancashire cheese pie

Posted in Food with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 19, 2011 by Robin Gosnall

Half Hour Meals

If this sounds like some kind of vegetarian main course at a dinner party, well it pretty much is, and most vegetarians would be really happy to be served a slice of this. You could even get away with serving non-vegetarians this dish – or just make it to take in a packed lunch for work or a spot of fishing.

a couple of good knobs of butter
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 celeriac weighing about 350g
salt and freshly ground black pepper
200g Lancashire cheese, grated
about 250-300g puff pastry, rolled to cm thick
1 egg, beaten

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Melt the butter in a pan and gently cook the onion without colouring for 2-3 minutes; remove from the heat and leave to cool. Cut the celeriac in half and slice it as thinly as possible with a very sharp knife or a mandolin. Blanch the slices in boiling salted water for 2-3 minutes.

Cut the puff pastry into two discs, one about 20cm across and the other about 25cm. Lay the smaller one on a tray and prick holes in it with a fork. Arrange layers of the celeriac on the pastry, leaving a 2cm gap around the edge; scatter with some onion, a little cheese and season.

Continue layering up the rest of the ingredients in a dome fashion until you have used them all up. Brush the edges of the pastry with egg and lay the larger one on top, pressing the edges together with your fingers. Brush the top with egg and leave to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Bake for about 30-40 minutes; test with a knife to ensure the celeriac is cooked.

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