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Emigrated from America to New Zealand and never looked back. Couldn't have asked for a better husband, family & life!


I'm back! And what a lovely holiday we had. Yes, it was just a short break, but a well deserved one. Now it's back to unpacking, laundry and yes - back to the kitchen!

First, I have to say, the Blenheim and Picton areas are gorgeous. We had a great time with our friends down there who took us around to some lovely places and shared their local farmer's market with us. Absolutely fabulous!

We even managed to fit in a day of tramping through the bush (that's hiking to you Yankee Doodles). We did one of the tracks along the Queen Charlotte Sounds but only walked 11 of the 71 kilometers...which was enough for me anyway! A mail boat picked us up in Picton and ferried us out to Resolution Bay where we began our hike. Four hours later it picked us up at the other end (well knackered and yet, pretty satisfied with ourselves). We even caught sight of one of the little blue penguins (aka fairy penguin) swimming around in the bay as we were preparing to board the boat back to Picton.

In any case, it was a great few days away but I promised this recipe from last week, so here is a treat of a veggie dish. This was another Contessa-inspired dish that went very nicely with our rolled pork loin, and I am certain it would go well with a plethora of other main dishes as well. We love cauliflower and we love cheese - what better than putting them together, eh?

Off to plan tonights menu now...so, until tomorrow...


1 Cauliflower (approx 1 Kilo or 2 ½ Lbs), cut into large florets
4 Tbsp Butter
3 Tbsp Flour
2 Cups Milk, hot
½ Tsp Nutmeg
1 ½ Cups Gruyere
½ Cup Parmiggiano Reggiano
¼ Cup Bread Crumbs
*Crushed Sea Salt
*Freshly Ground Black Pepper

*Amounts vary to tastes


Preheat the oven to 190 C (375 F).

Blanch the cauliflower florets in a large pot of boiling salted water for about 3 minutes, or steam until tender but still firm.

Drain the cauliflower & set it aside.

Next, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat to make a roux paste.

Now add the flour, stirring constantly for approximately 2 minutes.

Carefully pour the hot milk into the roux mixture and stir until it comes to a soft boil.

Continue stirring constantly, for 1 minute, or until thickened.

Now remove it from the heat, and add 1 teaspoon of salt, some pepper to taste, nutmeg, 1 cup of the Gruyere, and all of the Parmesan.

Next, pour about 1/3 of the sauce into the bottom of a baking dish and arrange the drained cauliflower on top, then pour the rest of the sauce evenly over the cauliflower.

Combine the breadcrumbs with the remaining ½ cup of Gruyere and sprinkle on top, then melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and drizzle over the gratin.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the top is browned.

This dish is great to make ahead of time and is great served hot or at room temperature.

2 Thoughts & Remarks:

Cheryl said...

That looks delish! and I love that cute little penguin!

MaryBeth said...

I'm not fond of the veggies but this actually looks good, how can you go wrong when it's covered in cheese.