Golden Cauliflower Gratin with Capers
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 75 minutes
Even those who claim not to like cauliflower are often converted by this creamy gratin, which gets a dose of heat from a generous quantity of red pepper flakes. A topping of buttered bread crumbs adds a nice crunch to the tender vegetable.
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- 4 tsp. unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the dish
- 1 medium head cauliflower
- 3 1/2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups (12 fl. oz./375 ml) whole milk
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/3 cup (2/3 oz./20 g) fresh bread crumbs
- 1 Tbs. capers, rinsed and drained
- 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
Directions:Preheat an oven to 400°F (200°C). Butter a medium baking dish.
Set a steamer basket over boiling water in a saucepan (the water should not touch the bottom of the basket). Add the whole cauliflower head to the basket, cover and steam until almost tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and let cool. Cut into 8 wedges and arrange in the baking dish.
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt 3 tsp. of the butter. When it foams, remove it from the heat and whisk in the flour. Return to medium heat and slowly whisk in the milk. Reduce the heat to low, add 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper, and cook, whisking occasionally, until the sauce is thickened and smooth, about 15 minutes.
In a small fry pan over medium heat, melt the remaining 1 tsp. butter. When it foams, add the bread crumbs and cook, stirring often, until golden, 3 to 4 minutes.
Stir the capers and red pepper flakes into the sauce and pour over the cauliflower. Sprinkle with the bread crumbs.
Bake until the sauce is bubbling and the top is golden, about 30 minutes. Serve immediately. Serves 4.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cooking from the Farmers’ Market (Weldon Owen, 2010)