As in most "gratin" recipes in France, the vegetables tend to be overcooked. It gives a different taste to the cauliflower than the one you get when the florets are just "al dente" but it's easier to feed to the children because it melts in their mouth. If you are feeding younger children, you could puree vegetables taken from the bottom of the pan (so that you don't get much white sauce and cheese). I tend to to that for my younger kid who is not a big fan of cauliflower au gratin (any DNA reason?). Bon Appétit!
Ingredients (for 6 persons)
- 1 head of cauliflower, florets separated
- 1 sweet potatoes, pealed and cubed
- 3 potatoes, skin off and cubed
- 1 cup grated Swiss cheese
For the Sauce Béchamel (White sauce)
- 3.5 tablespoon (50g) butter
- 1/2 cup (50g) All Purpose flour
- 2.5 cups (60cl) milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Ground nutmeg to taste
Steaming the vegetables:
Preparing the Sauce Béchamel:
- Steam the vegetables until soft
- While the vegetables are steaming, prepare the Sauce Béchamel
Preparing the Gratin
- In a pot melt butter over medium heat. When the butter starts to bubble, pour in the flour and whisk for 2-3 minutes until golden blond (not brown!).This creates the "roux".
- Warm the milk (supposedly, the milk has to be just below boiling point but I just warm it in the microwave)
- Pour in the milk one cup at a time and whisk until the sauce thickens (it takes at least 5 minutes)
- Add salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste
- In a baking pan, put the vegetables
- Pour the sauce Béchamel on top of the vegetables
- Add Swiss cheese evenly on top
- Bake in the oven for 15 minutes
- Broil until golden brown if necessary.
My personal comments:
- I use my pressure cooker to steam the vegetables. It takes less than 5 minutes.