Cauliflower and Kale Gratin

This recipe is essentially a play on Cauliflower Cheese with extra kale goodness. Creamy and tangy, this gratin works wonders as a side for four, or a main for two.

Time Preparing: 20 mins
Time Cooking: 20 mins
Serves: 4
Difficulty: 2/5
Season: Autumn

Ingredients
– 1/2 Bunch Kale (from box)
– 1 Cauliflower (from box)
– 50g Butter
– 100g Cheddar Cheese, grated
– 50g Parmesan
– 1 Small Onion, finely chopped (optional)
– 300ml Milk
– 50g Plain Flour
– 50g Breadcrumbs
– 2tsp Rosemary
– Salt and Pepper, seasoning

Method
1. Start by preheating the oven to 200 degrees
2. Remove stalks from kale leaves and cut into 2 inch strops
3. Remove cauliflower leaves and stalks, so you’re left with the florets
4. Add cauliflower to a pan of boiling water (with a little salt) and leave to boil for 10 mins
5. Whilst the cauliflower is boiling, being to make your sauce. Melt the butter in the pan, add flour until you have a thick paste then gradually add milk
6. Once you have a smooth consistency, add two thirds of the cheddar
7. Once the cauliflower had been boiling for ten mins, add the kale for a further two then drain
8. Add kale and cauliflower to an oven dish, spread sauce over then top with the parmesan, breadcrumbs and remaining and cheddar
9. Bake for 20 mins until golden and crispy

Daylight Savings = Comfort Food?

It’s that time of the year when daylight saving kicks in, which means comfort food beckons ever more. So for the ultimate comfort food as winter hovers on the horizon try cauliflower cheese. Add a little edge with a teaspoon of English mustard.

Try not to boil cauliflower for too much as it does lose all that wonderful anti-oxidants and compounds that fight the build-up of toxins and inflammation in our body, with “losses of 20–30% after five minutes, 40–50% after ten minutes, and 75% after thirty minutes. However, other preparation methods, such as steaming, microwaving and stir frying, have no significant effect on the compounds” (from Wiki).

In fact, the Ottolenghi guru recommends slow roasting on low in the oven for a few hours (yep, you read that right) until beautifully caramelised. He’s got other creative ideas like grating raw cauliflower to derive carb-free vegetarian “rice” or “cous cous” but since that’s not our idea of comfort for the shortening days we’ll leave that for you to investigate (or pay to eat at one of the Ottolenghi outlets).

Our cheat’s version of an Ottolenghi-like dish (with a manageable ingredient list) is to roast the florets at 190 deg C with olive oil, sea salt, sumac and cumin for 45-60 mins then add a squeeze and zest of lemon and finally scatter with chopped parsley and/or almond flakes (toast in the frying pan until golden brown) to finish. Alternatively, if you don’t have sumac use ground coriander for a more Indian twist. For more exciting ideas, check out Guardian’s 9 other best cauliflower recipes.

For more Indian options, try the classic alu gobhi cauliflower potato curry. Chopped or sliced onions and garlic, along with curry leaves if you have them, also add wonderfully to the mix. Simply add to the popping cumin seeds and tomato puree, and fry until tender and fragrant.

And on what to do with some of the other vegetables in your veg box here are a few ideas, some of which from our past newsletters/ blog posts:

And for those of you scratching around for what to do with the kids for half term, bring them along to Mile End Children’s Park’s Growing Zone for Soup Day this Saturday from 12-4pm.

This Week’s Bounty

Standard Box
* Valour Potatoes, Perry Court
* Carrots, Lancs
* Onions, Kent
* Cauliflower, Kent
* Sweetcorn, Kent
Celery, Lancs
Fennel with tops, Kent
Bulls Blood, Perry Court
Small Box
Items starred (*) above

No-Potato Substitute
Kale, Kent

Fruit Supplement
Pears, Kent (standard box only)
Bananas, Dom Rep