By Sophia Young – Kitchen Manager at Embercombe
Feasting a la Embercombe ~ Cauliflower Cheese for Christmas
It’s fair to say at Embercombe, we make a rather delicious, rich and creamy, vegan Cauliflower Cheese and for, this time of year, it’s perfect for cosy feasting with beloved family and friends. It was the main dish of choice for our coming together celebration and mark, as a team, the end of 2021, to honour each other and look back at everything, within yet another unpredictable year, that we’ve accomplished.
The kitchen itself has been blessed to prepare well over 10,000 meals since we reopened in May and, for each and everyone of you that’s stepped through our gates, it’s been wonderful to create nourishment for every participant. We look forward to welcoming back, as well many new faces, in 2022!
For the cauliflower:
Using two heads, break into florets and lightly steam. Avoid super al dente and equally avoid over-steaming, otherwise when adding the sauce, the florets break down to mush with further cooking. You’re looking for cauli’s ‘sweet spot’ 🙂 If time allows, roast the leaves in the oven with coriander seeds, turmeric and fresh ginger and reserve in the fridge or freezer for a mightily tasty soup (recipe to follow in the New Year…)
For the cheese sauce:
Using 100gm vegan marg, gently heat in a pan and once melted, add 75gm of buckwheat flour. Cook the roux without liquid for approx 5-8 mins, stirring throughout, to ‘cook’ the flour.
Start whisking in the milk, using approx x1 litre of oat milk plus 1-2 Oatly creams. Add slowly and cultivate patience as the sauce takes time to thicken.
During this process, add the following ingredients:
- Minced garlic, 4-6 cloves
- Tahini, to taste. For depth of flavour and creaminess, the more the better!
- Salt, pepper
- Half a tub of Engevita flakes
- Dijon mustard, x1 generous dessert spoon
For the crispy crumb:
- Make breadcrumbs from the equivalent of 2-3 slices of bread
- Combine x2 large dessert spoons of Engevita flakes
- Finely chopped sundried tomatoes
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Poppy Seeds
- Chilli flakes
Place the steamed cauli in a sizeable ceramic dish and pour over the sauce. Heartedly sprinkle the crumble crumb on top of the cauli and cook in the oven for approx 45 mins.
We ate ours with:
- Roasted Spuds with Lemon Zest, Nigella Seeds & Cavolo Nero
- Carrots roasted with Cumin
- Red Cabbage sauted with Caraway, Apple & Ginger
- Tomato Halves roasted with Coriander Seeds