Monday, April 6, 2020


I haven't made any new recipes lately, just ones we have done a lot of times before.  All favorites but as ingredients for certain foods are harder to find now, we are sticking with the basics.  Therefore, I'm sharing this one, another old favorite.

Cooking nicely in the oven.  This is before I put the broiler on to brown a little more.
I found this on Epicurious which you can find here. It is part of their Thanksgiving Menu.  I know we have a ways to go before Thanksgiving, but we are not waiting until then to try this dish again.

Mashed Potato and Cauliflower Gratin  
Makes 8 servings
Active time: 1 hour - Total time 2 hours

2 pounds russet (baking) potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1-1/4 cups whole milk, divided
1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, divided
4 ounces coarsely grated Italian Fontina or Gruyere cheese (about 1 cup packed)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (2 to 2-1/2 pound) head cauliflower, cut into 1-1/2 inch pieces, including stems and core
3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
3/4 to 1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, divided 

Put potatoes and 2 teaspoons salt in a large heavy saucepan, and cover with cold water (about two inches over the top of the potatoes, make sure your pan is large enough to accommodate).  Bring to a boil and cook, partially covered, until potatoes are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

While potatoes are boiling, heat 3/4 cup milk and 3 tablespoons of butter in a small saucepan until butter is melted and milk is hot, but not boiling.  Keep warm off the heat, covered.  

Drain potatoes well in a sieve or colander and return to hot saucepan.  Add milk mixture, Fontina (or Gruyer) and pepper, and mash with a potato masher or fork to desired consistency.  Season with salt and keep warm, covered.  

Bring a pot of well-salted water to a boil, then add cauliflower and garlic, and simmer until cauliflower is very tender, 13 to 15 minutes.

Drain cauliflower in a colander and pulse with remaining 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, and 3 tablespoons of butter in a food processor until it is chunky puree.  

Stir the mashed potatoes and cauliflower mixture together in a large bowl, and season with salt and pepper.  Transfer to a buttered 3-quart flameproof, shallow baking dish (not glass).

Heat oven to 425 deg. F. with rack in middle.  Melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter, and gently brush over potato-cauliflower mixture, then sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/4 to 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano (to taste).  Bake until potato mixture bubbles around edges, about 20 minutes.

Turn on broiler and broil 6 to 8 inches from heat, until topping is browned in spots, 1 to 2 minutes.

The cook notes that the potato and cauliflower mixture can be made up to 2 days ahead, before brushing the melted butter and sprinkled cheese over the top.  Bring to room temperature, then bake and broil as directed.  

Recipe can be halved and baked in a 2-quart flameproof shallow baking dish.

It was a wonderful side dish.  The cheese sprinkled on the top turns into a lovely crust and is the yummiest.

As sometimes happens there were a few changes. I forgot to add the garlic when cooking the cauliflower, but it certainly didn't detract from the taste of the dish.  

I missed the part where you put the potatoes back into the oven.  Instead after draining them I tossed them into the mixing bowl of my stand mixer, along with the milk-butter mixture and cheese. I mixed them into a mash, tossed the cooked cauliflower in and combined thoroughly.  The other way there would be more texture to the vegetables, but we enjoyed this creamy mash version.

I also used 1% milk instead of the whole milk, only because it was snowing like the dickens today and didn't feel like driving up to the store in that mess just for milk (that was on January 21st).  I like to use what is in a recipe but after tasting the finished product, I will stick to the 1%. The dish was still very creamy and didn't seem to miss it.

We both loved the combination of mashed potatoes and cauliflower. My Mum used to make something similar when we were kids.  (We have also recently discovered how much we like mashed potatoes with rutabaga.  An equal amount of both veggies, boiled until tender, and mixed with butter (or if you want a lighter version, low-sodium chicken broth, being careful not too add too much liquid that it goes soupy), sour cream, salt and pepper.  

When I make a normal size dish I usually make one to eat that day and one to freeze.  There were also leftovers that only seem to taste better the next day.

I served this with ham and broiled tomatoes but it would be good with any number of dishes, or even on its own for a light supper.  This side dish could be served at any mealtime, and I think it would go great with eggs, mushrooms or a favorite fruit.  
Knowing that many of us globally are still sheltering in place, I will wish you a great week, one that is keeping you happy and healthy.

Here's a smile for you from Ina Garten.
Click here to watch her make a refreshing Cosmopolitan.  Thank you Ina!


  1. Oh yum! This looks so wonderful. I’ve been cooking more often these days.

    1. Thank you Kay :) I am very happy you like the look of this dish. We do seem to be spending more time in the kitchen these days.

  2. I have never seen a dish like this. It looks absolutely yummy!!!

  3. This sounds good. If there is cauli AND potatoes available when next I shop I may well make it.
    Thank you.

    1. Thanks EC, and I will keep my fingers crossed for you :) We were actually talking about planting our own veggies recently. One of my sister-in-law's always has an amazing garden. If we ever get started, I can see we will be asking her for a few tips.

  4. Replies
    1. Obrigado e desejo-lhe um abraço e uma boa semana :)

  5. Denise, I did see that video of Ina Garten and the giant cosmopolitan and she is always entertaining, even more so now. This recipe looks so good and I have a head of cauliflower bought over the weekend, so it may be used to try this recipe. Thanks

    1. Thanks Dorothy, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did :)

  6. Hello, this looks delicious. A great side dish! Thanks for sharing!
    Take care & stay safe! Wishing you a happy day and a great new week!

    1. Hi Eileen, I wish you the same and thank you :)

  7. my mouth is watering, drooling on keyboard might happen

  8. I was just thinking that would go well with ham and there appeared your plate of food. Delicious!

    1. Thank you Ellen :) We will be making this for Easter :)

  9. This looks and sounds delicious!


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