Cauliflower Gratin with Endive

I’ve been making this classic Martha Stewart recipe for years! It’s become a Thanksgiving favorite of many friends and clients. I often get a craving for it midwinter…  serve this as a vegetarian main course for lunch or dinner with a simple green salad tossed in a bright vinaigrette.

Serves 8


Cauliflower_Gratin_Prep

Ingredients

·  ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, plus more for dish
·  2 heads Belgian endive, cut lengthwise into sixths
·  1 cup fregola Sarda (semolina pasta) or Israeli (large pearl) couscous
·  2 large heads cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into florets
·  ¼ cup all-purpose flour
·  3 cups milk
·  2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh marjoram or oregano
·  1 teaspoon coarse salt
·  ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
·  ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
·  3 cups finely grated (about 10 ounces) Gruyere cheese
·  ¼ cup fresh breadcrumbs
·  ¼ cup coarsely grated (about 2 ounces) Parmesan cheese

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees with rack in lower third. Butter a 1½-quart, deep, wide ovenproof dish. Put endive in bottom of dish. Arrange pasta or couscous over endive. Top with cauliflower.

Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in flour. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring, 2 minutes. Whisk in milk; cook, whisking, until mixture thickens, about 4 minutes.

Remove from heat. Whisk in marjoram, salt, black pepper, and cayenne. Whisk in Gruyere until smooth. Pour over cauliflower. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs. Set dish on a baking sheet.

Bake 30 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees; bake until cauliflower is tender, about 40 minutes. (If browning too quickly, tent with foil.) Transfer to a wire rack; let cool 10 minutes before serving.

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