- 3 leeks
- 1 onion
- 2 cauliflowers
- 100g butter
- 800ml full cream milk
- A handful of thyme, leaves only
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 x 200g Godminster truffle cheddar
- 2 tbsp cornflour
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 300g all butter shortcrust pastry
- 1 egg
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper
- Large deep frying pan or casserole dish
- Measuring jug
- Large pan with lid
- Large pie dish
- Small bowl
- Pastry brush
Trim the leeks and rinse out any grit. Finely slice them. Peel and thinly slice the onion. Pull the leaves from the cauliflower and discard any tatty ones. Finely shred the leaves. Fill and boil the kettle.
Place a large, deep frying pan or casserole dish on a medium heat and add the butter. Melt the butter then add the leeks, onion and cauliflower leaves to the pan. Cook for 15 mins, stirring regularly till the veg is soft. Turn the heat off if you are still preparing the rest of the pie, after the veg has cooked for 15 mins.
While the veg is cooking, begin to make your white sauce. Pour in 800ml milk (save the rest for your Yorkshire puddings) into a large pan and drop in the thyme sprigs and 2 bay leaves. Add a good pinch of salt and pepper then place the pan on a medium heat and bring till it just starts to bubble. Don’t let the milk boil, however. Let it simmer for 10 mins then turn off the heat, popping a lid on the pan to keep warm.
Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C fan/Gas 6. Chop the cauliflower into large bite-sized florets.
Remove the truffle cheddars from the wax coatings. Coarsely grate the cheddar.
Pour the thyme and bay-infused milk through a sieve and into a jug. Discard the bay and thyme.
Sprinkle the cornflour into the pan with the cooked leeks and stir well for a min.
Slowly pour the milk into the pan with the leeks, stirring well till well combined. Dollop in the Dijon mustard. Bring back up to a gentle bubble then pop in the cauliflower florets and cook gently for 5 mins, stirring once or twice.
While the cauliflower is cooking, roll out your pastry into a large circle or rectangle that will just cover your large chosen pie dish.
When the cauliflower has cooked for 5 mins, add all but a small handful of the grated truffle cheddar. Gently stir. Taste the sauce and add more salt or pepper if you think it needs it. Carefully transfer your cauliflower cheese mix into a large oven-proof dish.
Crack the egg into a bowl and beat. Place your pastry on top of the cauliflower cheese. Fold any hanging edges in to create a crust. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg then sprinkle over the remaining truffle cheddar.
Slide the pie into the oven and cook for 30 mins till the pastry is golden and the cheesey filling is bubbling around the edges.
Remove the pie from the oven and leave to stand for 10 mins before serving.
Get ahead ^ Steps 1-3 can be done the day before serving. Store the cooked leeks in a sealed container in the fridge. Cover the pan and store in the fridge, leaving the thyme and bay in the pan to further infuse flavour into the milk. Heat both back up and continue to follow the recipe from step 4.