A few months back, sitting on Mathilde's comfy sofa and chatting vegetables to Carla, I bemoaned my lack of adventurousness, inventiveness and originality when it comes to cooking vegetables at home. Carla had some tasty ideas (and recommended Yotam Ottolenghi's books, which I really ought to get my hands on). Mathilde rushed out of the room and returned with a gift for me, The Farm Shop Cookbook by Christine McFadden.
Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago when (almost 6 months late and only then because I chased and chased and chased) I finally received a box of Riverford vegetables and their book; this was the gift offered with a subscription to Food & Travel magazine.
In the box was a beautiful Romanesco cauliflower (also known as Romanesco broccoli) with it's vivid lime green hue and compelling naturally fractal spiral heads.
What to do with it?
I know I could have checked in the Riverford book but went instead to Mathilde's gift.
The Farm Shop Cookbook revealed a recipe for Green Cauliflower Cheese with Blue Vinny and Tomatoes. We decided to subsitute Stilton for the Blue Vinny and omitted the tomatoes and breadcrumbs.
Green Romanesco Cauliflower Cheese with Stilton and Parmesan
1 Romanesco cauliflower (ours was approximately 500 grams)
30 grams butter
2 tablespoons plain flour
300 ml milk
1/4 teaspoon English mustard
salt and pepper to taste
Approximately 100 grams Stilton (might have been more, we didn't measure)
"Some" grated Parmesan cheese
- Cut the Romanesco into pieces, discarding the tough stalks.
- Microwave (or steam, as per the original instructions) until only just tender and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
- Melt the butter over low heat.
- Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes until very smooth.
- Heat the milk in a separate pan until it starts to bubble, then gradually whisk it into the flour mixture.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the mustard, seasoning and Stilton.
- Stir until the cheese has melted completely into the sauce.
- Pour / mix the sauce with the Romanesco.
- Grate parmesan over the top.
- Bake for 20 minutes until golden and bubbling.
We had this with a lovely roast rib of beef and some roast potatoes (also from the box).
Absolutely delicious and we'll definitely be making green cauliflower cheese again!