Cauliflower Cheese a Cheap and Easy Meal Image 1

Cauliflower Cheese a Cheap and Easy Meal

In this blog we look at a cheap and easy meal you can prepare without hours of preparation and with very few ingredients.

Cauliflower cheese is the ultimate vegetable based comfort food. There’s really nothing else that compares to this delicious side dish, and it’s even got enough star power to be a meal in its own right.

Prepping The Cauliflower

Cauliflower Cheese a Cheap and Easy Meal Image 2To start off, cut your cauliflower into chunks that are all roughly the same size. Boil a pan of water and give these about five minutes at high heat. You’re going to want to tenderise, but not cook them, so during the baking they cook through to the middle.

Next, find yourself an ovenproof bowl. This needs to withstand the heat of later baking, and be deep enough to mostly submerge your cauliflower. Take your softened cauli chunks off the heat, and arrange them in your ovenproof bowl. Put this aside for later.

The Sauce

White sauce is pretty difficult, but also fairly easy to master with the right technique, so here’s the absolute easiest way to start one off. You’ll need flour, butter, milk and plenty of grated cheddar.

First, get half a cup of flour and have that on standby. Put a pan on a low to medium heat and add a large knob of butter. As it melts, gradually add in the flour and keep stirring until your flour and butter combine into a greasy ball.

Then begin gradually adding your milk to the ball, squashing and stirring so the chunks even out and eventually the ingredients combine into a sauce of a thin consistency. Don’t waste any time adding the cheese, and do not allow the sauce to become too thick or burn. Once all the cheese has melted into the sauce, pour it over your cauliflower in the ovenproof bowl.

Baking

Preheat your oven to 170-180 degrees. To season your cauliflower cheese you can get a little creative with spices, paprika, or just salt and pepper. A little celery salt is also great. Sprinkle the seasoning over, then also add some additional cheese to melt as it bakes.

Your indicator for when the cauliflower cheese is done is the top of the dish going golden brown and bubbly, but not too crusty. This dish is delicious as it is easy to make, and is best served straight out of the bowl it was baked in.

For an even more filling dish, serve with a rasher of bacon or two, as well as a generous helping of tenderstem broccoli.

Either way it makes a warming and relatively low cost meal that’s great for weekday evening meals, especially when you haven’t got hours to prepare something different and delicious for you or your family.