The holidays are such a special time. Old traditions are evident and new ones created. This year feels especially sweet as it’s the first year Griffin seems to really ‘get’ Christmas. He has rapidly picked up the lyrics of our favorite carols and talks about Santa constantly. He has even been caught telling his little brother about the tree, the ornaments, and sitting on Santa’s lap. My heart could just about burst.
About five years ago, my sister Heidi introduced a delectable dish to our Christmas Eve meal that has most definitely become a staple. Cauliflower Gratin is not the healthiest side on the planet, but a little goes a LONG way in the flavor department. I typically double the recipe to feed a large group of about 10-14 people. Another tip: It is very helpful to have all the ingredients chopped, sliced, diced, measured, and minced before you start cooking. It makes things go much more smoothly. Here’s the recipe:
6 tbsp. butter
4 garlic cloves, minced
4 ounces, thinly sliced prosciutto, cut into strips
1 large head cauliflower, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
2 tbsp. flour
1.5 cups heavy cream
pinch cayenne pepper
salt and pepper to taste
1.5 cups shredded Swiss cheese
1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt butter in a large, heavy-bottomed pot and saute garlic for 2 minutes. Stir in prosciutto and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the cauliflower and cook until it begins to lose it’s crispness, about 6-8 minutes.
Stir in the flour and cream and incorporate well. Add the cayenne, salt, and pepper to taste. Bring it to a boil and immediately remove from the heat.
Add the cheese and place in a large dish. Bake until browned and bubbly, about 30 minutes. Top with fresh parsley and enjoy!