Thursday, September 15, 2011

Macaroni and cauliflower Cheese Bake

Original Recipe
This is a Jamie Oliver Recipe!


1/2 head of cauliflower
8 oz cheddar cheese
4 oz parmesan cheese
small bunch of italian parsley
1lb dried macaroni elbos
1c creme fraiche or sour cream

remove the outer green leaves from cauliflower and discard. Sliced the ends off the stalks and cut into small florets. Grate the cheese into a large heatproof bowl. Finely chop the parsley. bring a large pan of salted water to a boil. Add macaroni and all the cauliflower and cook according to package directions. Place the bowl of cheese over the saucepan and add the sour cream. Stir every so often until the cheese is smooth and melted. If the water boils up beneath the bowl, just turn the heat down a bit. Add the parsley and a bit of salt. Remove the bowl of cheese using oven gloves. Drain the macaroni in a colander. Return the pasta to the pan and pour the melted cheese in and stir. You can either serve it like this, or finish it under the broiler to make it crispy and golden. Preheat your broiler to a medium to high heat. Add 2/3c water (if you saved your cooking water use that) and stir it in. Transfer to a baking dish. Place under broiler until golden and bubbling.

So as I have mentioned before we need 8 servings of everything, so we added to this a bit. We put a full head of cauliflower and 8oz of Parmesan. If you wanna do that.... Do a 2:1 ration of your cheese, have double the amount of cheddar as you do Parmesan, because Parmesan cheese has that bite to it and the cheddar gives it a smoother taste. Also we just made a double broiler for the cheese, we didn't put it over the pasta-there was no room. So we just boiled some water in a separate pan and then added the bowl to that. Stir the cheese frequently so it doesn't stick to the pan. I loved this. I am a mac and cheese purist (of course that changes a bit more every time we go here), so I wasn't too sure about the cauliflower, but it softened while cooking and it was super good. Another recommendation I would have if you decide to use the whole head of cauliflower... use a 1.5 of noodles so you get a good mix of noodles and cauliflower. We didn't put ours in the broiler.... I like mine creamy (mac and cheese at its finest) and the benefit of doing most of the cooking is you get your say when it comes to that cooking :-) This was super good.. and the cauliflower made the mac n cheese healthy enough for me to get away with having pasta and cheese in the same dish (my two favorite ingredients).

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