Updated: Jan 11, 2021
by Ollie Pudney & Joe Swiers from The Bull & Last (Etive Pubs Ltd)
Photography by Joe Howard
Exactly what a cauli cheese should be: indulgent, creamy and stuffed full of cheese.
Serves 4-6 generously, with some left over for the next day
You will need: a roughly 30 × 22 × 7cm baking dish
1 large cauliflower or 2 small (about 850g of florets) 70g unsalted butter 70g plain flour 600ml milk (whole or semi- skimmed) 100g Gruyère cheese, grated 200g mature Cheddar cheese, grated 1 tbsp Dijon mustard 4 spring onions, trimmed, washed and thinly sliced 200g Taleggio cheese, cut into 5mm-thick slices sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 200°C / fan 180°C / gas 6. Bring a saucepan of lightly salted water to the boil. Break or cut the cauliflower into chunky, medium-sized florets. Blanch the cauliflower in the boiling water for 2–3 minutes, then drain in a colander. Melt the butter in a separate large saucepan over a low heat, then add the flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring, until the butter and flour mixture smells biscuity. Gradually add the milk, whisking as you go, until it is all incorporated. Cook over a low heat for 6–7 minutes until thickened, then taste and season with a little salt and pepper. Stir in the grated cheeses and mustard, until the cheese has melted. Once you are happy with the taste of the sauce, remove from the heat and add the cauliflower and spring onions to the pan. Stir well to make sure all the cauliflower is coated, then transfer everything to the baking dish and spread it out. Place the Taleggio slices on top and transfer to the hot oven to bake for 25–30 minutes, until golden brown and bubbling. Remove from the oven and serve.