Cauliflower Gratin and Keeping it Keto
Staying in ketosis* is not hard and there are so many different and satisfying things to eat that will keep you in ketosis. It’s awesome. I love it.
However, there were days (few and far between) but there were days when I could have seriously stuck my whole head in a vat of mashed potatoes. I’d dream of swimming pools filled with Fritos. But that was before I discovered Cauliflower Gratin.
Cauliflower is the red headed stepchild of the vegetable world. Sadly, many people still overlook and misunderstand it. To the unenlightened eye, it’s the boring white mass on the vegetable tray. But once you see its true potential as a flavor and fat carrier, you’ll see it’s nothing short of a miracle. Fortunately, it is getting more and more great press. Check out what Alton Brown has to say in his Best of 2016 Podcast.
Ingredient of the Year: Cauliflower…again.
This cruciferous cousin of the cabbage continues its campaign to conquer the entire culinary world and that’s OK with me. This year I had cauliflower nachos for the first time, General Tso’s cauliflower for the first time and buffalo cauliflower for the first time. And yet…and yet, still, home cooks aren’t as into it as they should be. Let’s change that.
Runners up: tinned fish and persimmons
You can rice it, which is cool. You can mash it with cream and butter, that’s better. But when you bake it with cream, cheese, nutmeg, and butter! Oh la la!!! Hello Gorgeous!!! Who needs a spud now??? Yeah, I think not.
If you’ve gone keto, replace “mashed potatoes” in your vocabulary with “Cauliflower Gratin.” I kid you not, I know of a dinner party in the not too distant past where someone was totally busted licking the casserole dish in the kitchen! Yep, it’s that good.
*What exactly is Ketosis? The metabolic state of ketosis simply means that the quantity of ketone bodies in the blood have reached higher-than-normal levels. When the body is in a ketogenic state, this means that lipid energy metabolism is intact. The body will start breaking down your own body fat to fuel the body’s normal, everyday functions. In short, the body becomes a fat burner instead of a sugar (carbohydrate) burner.
Cauliflower Gratin Recipe
Thick and creamy with a hint of nutmeg, this recipe hits the spot every time. It is simply luscious! and seems almost too good to be true since it's low carb and gluten-free. You can't help but go back for 3rd and 4th! | www.lakesidetable.com
- 3 pounds cauliflower* chopped into 1-2 inch pieces
- 1 1/2 tablespoon corn starch
- 1 cup milk cold
- 2 cup heavy cream heated
- 1 tablespoon freeze dried shallots or 1 shallot minced
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg grated
- 3 teaspoons fresh thyme 1 teaspoon dried
- 1 cup Gruyere cheese or swiss, grated
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese grated
- 1 teaspoon salt
- measuring spoons and cups
- medium heavy sauce pan
- wooden spoon
- casserole dish
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Put chopped cauliflower into a 9x13 inch casserole dish.
Mix the corn starch with the cold milk until it is smooth. Pour the cream into the sauce pan and put it over low heat. Whisk in the corn starch milk mixture and shallots. Turn up the heat to medium and whisk constantly until it is thick and bubbling. Turn off the heat.
- Add salt, pepper, nutmeg, thyme, parmesan, and 1/2 cup of Gruyere. Stir well. Pour over cauliflower. Sprinkle remaining Gruyere and a grind or 2 of black pepper over the top.
- Bake for 45 minutes or until cauliflower is tender and the top is golden.
Inspired by Ina Garten For a lower fat option check out Ina Garten’s Cauliflower au Gratin.
*3lbs of cauliflower is approximately 2 medium heads of cauliflower.
The cornstarch is used to thicken the sauce. If you're not opposed to gluten or if you don't have cornstarch on hand this is an alternative way to thicken the sauce:
- Over medium heat, first melt 1 1/2 tablespoon butter in the pan, then add 1 1/2 tablespoon all purpose flour. (This is called a rue.)
- Stir them together until the flour bubbles and just starts to turn a wee bit darker.
- Heat the cream and milk together in the microwave until hot to the touch.
- Add the milk and cream mixture to the rue (flour/butter mixture) and stir until it thickens up.
- Now you can pick up the above recipe by adding the spices and cheeses. Enjoy!