- 1 Romanesco cauliflower
- 1 cauliflower
- 2 tbsp butter, at room temperature
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- A 500ml bottle of whole milk
- A 100g chunk of cheddar
- A 50g bag of breadcrumbs
- A pinch of cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 large handfuls of watercress
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
- ½ tbsp olive oil
- Steamer basket or colander
- A couple of pans
- Large ovenproof dish or two smaller ovenproof dishes
Pull the leaves off both the cauliflowers. Chop them into florets. Pop the cauliflower florets in a steamer basket or colander. Heat your oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4.
Pour a little boiling water into a pan (or steamer if you have one). Pop the basket or colander above the hot water. Cover. Steam for 15-20 mins till the cauliflowers are tender. While they cook, use a fork to mash 2 tbsp of the butter with 2 tbsp of the flour.
Pour the milk into a pan. Bring to the boil. Stir the milk now and then to stop it burning. Take off the heat. Slowly whisk in the flour mixture, a little at a time, till it’s fully combined and smooth.
Put the pan back on the heat. Bring to the boil. Whisk and simmer for 2 mins till the sauce is thick. Take off the heat.
Coarsely grate the cheddar. Stir two-thirds of it into the sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Tumble the cooked caulis into a large ovenproof dish or two smaller ones. Pour over the cheese sauce.
Mix the breadcrumbs with a pinch of cayenne pepper and the remaining cheese. Sprinkle over the top of the cauliflower cheese. Bake for 20 mins till golden and bubbling.
While the cauliflower cheese bakes, whisk 1 tbsp of the balsamic vinegar with ½ tbsp oil and a little salt and pepper.
Pick out any really thick watercress stalks. Pop the watercress into a bowl. Add the balsamic dressing. Toss to mix. Serve the watercress with the cauliflower cheese.