September 24, 2013
Caramelized Cauliflower and Mushroom Casserole
So apparently today it’s the third day of Autumn. Yeah, I didn’t saw that coming either. Mostly because it doesn’t feel like Fall yet; at least in my hood.
With the turn of the season, there are a number of things that change, not only the weather.
Fall crops come into their own just as summer delicious fruits and veggies are packing it in (sigh!)
But there is no room for despair people. Spices, roots like turnips and carrots, cabbages, and of course pumpkins, apples, and mushrooms will helps us coping with the end of summer's sweet corn and sun-warmed peaches.
When temperatures dip and the leaves drop, it’s time to fire up the oven. And that’s when this casserole comes into play.
You see, I am a HUGE fan of mushrooms and an even bigger fan of cauliflower (you probably already know this, don’t you?); so combining the two to make a delicious dish has to be my ultimate food fetish (not foot, FOOD!)
My mum used to make this casserole using rotini pasta and top it with a thick layer of béchamel (aka white sauce). It was one of my favorite things to eat when I was a little kid.
I would request it every other week year round. And my mom would reply “Mushrooms are not in season now, you have to wait for Fall to come around”. I then learned about seasonal foods; that you can’t get peaches in the winter or oranges in the summer.
Well, nowadays you can, if you’re willing to pay the extra price and are ready to settle for milder taste. But when I was a kid it was less common (or at least I like to think so).
Anyway, this is a healthier version of my mum’s super delicious mushroom casserole.
Caramelized cauliflower, sauteed mushrooms, garlic, onions - all made creamy with a blend of cheddar cheese and Greek yogurt and topped with a thin Parmesan crust.
The smell of baking it in the oven, brings back all sorts of childhood memories and emotions. I know, I’m feeling softy today; must be the turn of the season.
This dish is a total crowd pleaser, even cauliflower haters will embrace it. Trust.
Caramelized Cauliflower and Mushroom Casserole Print this recipe!
A little note for my vegan friends: Swap the cheese and sour cream for dairy-free alternatives, and eggs for flax eggs; you don’t want to miss out on this dish.
1 lb / 453 gr brown mushrooms (or white button), cleaned and chopped
1 medium cauliflower head, washed, trimmed, cored and cut into florets
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
½ teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 large free-range organic eggs
⅓ cup / 1.5 oz / 42 grams dubliner (or sharp cheddar cheese), shredded
½ cup / 5 oz / 140 gr Greek yogurt (or sour cream)
⅓ cup / 0.6 oz / 16 gr Parmesan cheese, grated
handful fresh parsley leaves, chopped
Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C) and place a rack in the middle. Rub a medium-large baking dish with a bit of olive oil and set aside.
Spread cauliflower florets in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle over 1 tablespoon of olive oil and sprinkle with coarse salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is lightly caramelized, turning once.
In the meantime, in a large skillet over medium-high heat saute’ the mushrooms in ½ tablespoon of olive oil sprinkled with a couple of pinches of salt. Stir every minute or so until the mushrooms have released their liquid and have browned a bit. Add the onions and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes until translucent. Stir in the garlic, cook for another minute and remove from the heat.
When the cauliflower is ready, add to the skillet and stir until combined.
In a large bowl combine eggs, cheese and Greek yogurt. Add cauliflower mushroom mixture, stir until well combined and turn out into your prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and cover with foil.
Lower oven temperature to 350°F (175°C).
Bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for 10 minutes, until golden around the edges.
Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley before serving.
One serving yields 165 calories, 7.85 grams of fat, 11.5 grams of carbs and 11.2 grams of protein.