Now please, no heart attacks, but there are only twelve more planning days til Thanksgiving -- if you celebrate Canadian Thanksgiving on October 13, that is, which many readers of both A Veggie Venture and Kitchen Parade do and I intend to this year, in long-distance communion with my Canadian family.
So Canadian or American, there's no time like the present to start thinking about the stars of the Thanksgiving table -- what, you think that'd be a turkey? -- the vegetables. Long-time readers know that I go all out to share ideas for Thanksgiving vegetable recipes, loading up all the best recipes, crowd pleasers that can be prepped beforehand, then finished just before Thanksgiving dinner.
This cauliflower is so good, heavens, don't wait til Thanksgiving to make it. (If need be, tell yourself that you just might need to 'practice' once or twice. Not that practice is really needed, this is dead easy, but just, you know, to taste test.)
THANK YOU, READERS!
In recent weeks, vegetable lovers have been subscribing to A Veggie Venture in droves! Welcome! With any luck, one or two new recipes a week will provide just the inspiration new readers are seeking, perhaps new ways to cook our favorite vegetables? perhaps an occasional nudge to try a new vegetable?
Lest I forget: Thank you to long-time readers, it's humbling, truly, that home cooks invite me into their kitchens. Occasionally an e-mail will start, "I've been reading your recipes for years."How did that happen?! But yes, this site goes way back to 2005 and has become a huge collection of vegetable recipes.
If you would, let me know via a quick e-mail or a comment, what you'd most like to see in the coming months. More of what? Less of what? More slow cooker recipes? More Weight Watchers recipes? More vegetarian suppers?
Hint: If you're looking for a particular recipe here, check out Five Ways to Find the Perfect Recipe. Feeling overwhelmed by all the choices? Check out just the favorite vegetable recipes.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving: I thank you all.
ONE-SKILLET CAULIFLOWER with CHEESE SAUCE
Time to table: 35 minutes
Serves about 6 for every-day, more for bigger meal
1-1/4 cup skim milk
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 head fresh cauliflower, outside leaves removed, core removed in a large V, sections cut into bite-size florets of roughly the same size (for even cooking)
1/4 cup skim milk
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup (2 ounces) sharp cheddar, grated
1 teaspoon good mustard such as Dijon
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives (mostly for color)
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs) or whole wheat bread crumbs
1/4 cup (1 ounce) sharp cheddar, grated
1/2 teaspoon olive oil
CAULIFLOWER In a large oven-safe skillet, heat the milk and salt on MEDIUM HIGH. Add the cauliflower as soon as it's prepped (the milk won't cover the cauliflower so place the stems down since they are more dense and take longer to cook), cover and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 10 - 15 minutes until the cauliflower is nearly fully cooked. (Slip a knife into the center of a stem, if it goes in easily, it's done.)
CHEESE SAUCE While cauliflower cooks, in a small bowl, whisk together the 1/4 cup milk and flour until smooth. Once the cauliflower is cooked, push the cauliflower to the side of the skillet. Slowly whisk the flour into the milk in the center of the skillet (it will start to thicken right away, just keep whisking). Stir in the remaining cheese sauce ingredients and let cook a minute or two, stirring occasionally to evenly distribute the cheese sauce. (If making ahead, transfer to a refrigerator dish and refrigerate until just before serving. Return the cauliflower to a skillet to warm through.) If you like, transfer hot cauliflower to an oven-proof serving dish, otherwise continue with the oven-safe skillet.
TOPPING Turn on the broiler, with a rack about six inches away from fire. Mix the topping ingredients and sprinkle across top of cauliflower. Put under the broiler to broil for 5 - 10 minutes or until topping begins to brown a little. Serve immediately.
TO PREP AHEAD
DAY BEFORE Assemble the panko topping. Cover and refrigerate.
MORNING OF Cook the cauliflower and cheese sauce. Cover and refrigerate.
BEFORE DINNER Warm through in a skillet. Transfer to oven-safe serving dish. Top with crumbs and put under the broiler until beginning to brown.
For every-day, it would be fine to cook and broil the cauliflower in the same skillet. I didn't for the photograph here, the sides of the pan got a little mucky looking, not good for a food blogger working on her photography skills! But do, to save the extra dish.
In smaller serving dishes, this cauliflower reheats beautifully in the microwave.
~ Cauliflower Cream ~
~ Cauliflower Tomato Medley ~
~ Creamy Cauliflower Gratin ~
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