(Sformato di Cavolfiore e Broccolo con Balsamella di Spinaci)
It's not that I don't like broccoli and cauliflower. It's just that it's difficult to find recipes that really allow them to shine. Know what I mean? I mean sure, there's your basic steamed broccoli/cauliflower with a white sauce. Booooooooooooooring.
Or you could throw them into a stirfry - that at least showcases their nice crunchy texture and colour.
Or, you could do as No Special Effects does and turn them into superstars in this deliciously creamy cheesy side-dish from Bon Appetit. Because once you've laid eyes on this mister and inhaled it's awesome aroma... well, there's no turning back, now is there?
Broccoli-Cauliflower with Cheesy Spinach Béchamel
Adapted from No Special Effects
Serves 6 - 8 as a side-dish
1 small head of broccoli, broken into small florets1 small head of cauliflower, broken into small florerets1 bunch (about 350g) fresh spinach3 tbsp butter1/4 cup flour2/3 cup milk + another 1/3 cup1 tsp minced garlic1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg50g freshly grated Parmesan cheese50g cheddar, gratedsalt & pepper to taste
1. Fill a large saucepan with salted boiling water, add the cauliflower and broccoli and cook for a few minutes until just tender but still rather crispy. Remember they are going to be cooked in the oven again so don't overcook them. Immediately drain them in a colander (reserving 2/3 cup of the cooking liquid) and rinse with cold water to halt the cooking process. Set aside.2. Next - steam/cook/microwave your spinach leaves for a few minutes until wilted, then drain and chop finely in a food processor. Set aside.3. Now preheat your oven to 180C and then start making your bechamel sauce - melt the butter in the same large saucepan you used for the veggies, then add the flour. Stir to combine and gradually add the milk, stirring all the while to get rid of any lumps. Add the reserved water and cook, stirring continously until the sauce thickens.4. Turn the stove off, and add the cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted into the sauce, then add nutmeg and season with salt & pepper. Add the spinach, stir to combine. Lastly add the cauliflower and broccoli. At this stage you might want to add an extra 1/3 cup of milk just to loosen things up a bit. I did and I think the end result turned out creamier for it.5. Transfer the mixture to a 27 x 17 cm ovenproof casserole and bake for 35 minutes at 180C. Turn the heat up to 200C and return to the oven for another 10 minutes to brown on top.
Nutritional info (per serving): Calories 195.7, Total fat 10.9 g, Saturated fat 6.6 g, Polyunsaturated fat 0.7 g, Monounsaturated fat 2.8 g, Cholesterol 29.0 mg, Sodium 313.3 mg, Potassium 825.0 mg, Total carbohydrate 16.2 g, Dietary fiber 5.9 g, Sugars 2.0 g, Protein 12.0 g
Good source of: Vitamin C 221.5 %, Vitamin A 125.1 %, Folate 53.2 %, Manganese 40.2 %, Calcium 30.1 %, Phosphorus 21.9 %, Vitamin B6 21.8 %, Riboflavin 19.2 %, Magnesium 19.8 %,