Monday, May 7, 2012

Truffled Three Cheese Cauliflower

This is just SO good! My husband and I have this pipe dream of opening our own brewpub one day, and sometimes when we make food, it passes the brewpub test. This one definitely belongs on the menu. Ben, ever the critic, wholeheartedly agrees. It's got just the right amount of richness, and is full of smoky truffle flavor.

Truffled Three Cheese Cauliflower

one head of cauliflower, chopped into florets
1 tbsp. garlic salt, or 1 minced garlic clove
salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 c. grated gruyere cheese
1/4 cup grated fontina cheese
handful grated or shaved parmesan, plus more for garnishing
2 tbsp. or so truffle oil, to your taste

Boil cauliflower florets in large pot until slightly tender. Drain most of the water; leave a cup or so. Using an immersion blender, puree cauliflower. Add spices and oil; continue to puree. (I leave it slightly chunky.) Add cheeses and stir. Serve piping hot, garnished with parmesan.

As I've mentioned, I LOVE cheese, and so does Ben. Gruyere is in my top five. (Number one, for the record, is a perfect Irish gouda aged five years in whiskey, from The Boulevard Market in Tecumseh, Michigan.) Gruyere is a sort of dry Swiss. Like wine, I prefer my cheese dry. Fontina is not my favorite; it's sweet and chewy. However, as when making a grilled cheese, the most delightful melted cheese combination  is a hard with a soft. Fontina melts beautifully. Parmesan just goes well with anything, especially as a final garnish. It provides just the right amount of salt and bite.

I've tried a couple of variations of this sort of recipe. I have a bottle of white truffle oil I'm trying to use up because I've heard the flavor wanes the longer the bottle's been open. It's been a culinary adventure. Every day I'm trufflin.' (I couldn't resist, OKAY?)  It makes for a decadent, grown-up mac&cheese, and an elegant addition to popcorn.

Any truffle oil recipes of your own? Leave a comment or a link! I'd love to try them.


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