Friday, March 28, 2008

An Unconventional War - but great food!

I invited my audience to review my twitter feed and pick a tweet that they would like me to expand on.  So far three people have taken me up on the offer, and I'll spread the replies over three separate posts, in the order they were received.  So first up:
"Cauliflower and broccoli cheese war awesome. Bonus, made enough for tomorrow night too :-)"

Hi Alan, I arrived here via Will's place. Can I cheekily request a post about the Cauliflower and Broccoli Cheese War?

Pleeease don't tell me it's just a typo, a cheese war sounds most exciting
Confession time, I'm afraid the "war" is a typo, it should have been "was", predictive text can at times be the bane of my life!  Perhaps what worries me the most though must be the number of times I use the word war, mistakenly or otherwise in texts for it to become the first choice of the predictive text algorithm. 
That said there has always been debate around how to make the perfect cauliflower cheese in our house, it doesn't quite border on war, but can lead to some heated debate.  So here for the record is the perfect way:
Place six eggs in a pan of water and bring to the boil, cook until hard-boiled, drain and cool with cold water.  Leave to one side in shells for later.
While eggs are cooking, take a head of cauliflower (add broccoli and/or leek if you wish), clean and separate into florets, include leaves if they are in good condition.  Place in a pan of cold water and heat.
Whilst vegetables are cooking, put two ounces of butter into another pan and melt of a low heat, add to this two ounces of self-raising or plain flour, mix together to form a roux.  Slowly add a pint of milk to the roux a little at a time, stirring continuously, and allowing the milk to combine, when all the milk has been added slowly bring to boiling point, without allowing to boil over or burn.
When vegetable have been partly cooked turn off heat under vegetable pan and allow to stand.  They should still be firm, and not allowed to be overcooked and go soggy.
Return to the cheese sauce, as it reaches boiling point start to add about half-a-pound of strong mature Cheddar cheese, a little at a time.  Allow cheese to melt into the sauce and keep adding until all the cheese has been combined.  Next flavour to taste.  Depending on your personal tastes now it's time to add something to the cheese sauce to give it a little bite; options include but are not limited to adding any or a combination of the following:
2 teaspoons of ground cumin and/or cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons of strong English mustard
1 tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce
Stir in seasoning well, and turn off heat.
Peel eggs and slice lengthways and place in the bottom of an ovenproof dish.  Next drain vegetables and return to their pan.  Add the cheese sauce and gently stir to thoroughly mix sauce and vegetables, when mixed spoon out into ovenproof dish on top of eggs.  Sprinkle a light grating of cheese on top and then add six strips of rolled, smoked back bacon on top.
Place all in oven and cook at a low to medium heat (120 Celsius), until bacon is cooked and top is pleasant golden brown.
Serve with crusty wholemeal or granary bread. 
Will feed three to four people.
So there you go, sorry, Three Legged Cat if that is not what you were expecting, but take it from me there is debate about the cheese sauce, but this IS the definitive method.

1 comment:

Three Legged Cat said...

I think I'm going to try this out tomorrow. I've often used mustard in cheese sauce, but never Worcester Sauce or cumin/cayenne. I'll have to give that a go.