Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Cauliflower and Ham Gratin

Tonight's dinner was a sort of "what's leftover" creation, with a vegetarian version on the side for my daughter. I had come across a recipe for a cauliflower ham gratin but it had received iffy reviews for the lack of flavor. So I decided to make mine with lots of stuff, which really boosted the flavor.

It was easy, and quick and used up a lot of that ham from Easter :-)

Cauliflower Ham Gratin

2 tablespoons butter
1 small onion, diced
2-3 shallots, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1/2 8 ounce package button mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper
1 cup milk
1/2 cup chicken or vegetable stock
dash nutmeg
1 16 ounce bag frozen cauliflower
1/2 cup gruyere or Swiss cheese, shredded, divided
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded (I don't use the can stuff), divided
1-2 cups cooked ham, diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Cook the cauliflower in the microwave, then drain well and chop it into one-inch pieces. In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Add the onions, garlic, shallots and peppers and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring regularly, until vegetables are softened. Add mushrooms and cook another 3-5 minutes, until mushrooms are softened. Sprinkle with flour and add about 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Stir until flour coats the vegetables. Add milk and broth a little at a time, stirring well after each addition, until it's all incorporated. Add nutmeg. Bring sauce to a boil and cook 1-2 minutes, until thick. Add 1/4 cup Swiss and 1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese and cauliflower, and stir.

(at this point, I divided out one-quarter of the mixture and put it in a small baking dish, topped with some of the reserved cheddar cheese and set it aside...that was the vegetarian version for my daughter).

Add the ham, then pour the mixture into a Pam coated baking dish. Top with reserved cheese. Bake at 375 for 20 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and melted. This one was a big hit with everyone in the family. They even had seconds :-)


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