Recipe: Caramelised Cauliflower Cheese

This nutty and rich dish is a step up for cauliflower cheese, with cauliflower puree used for sauce. It’s best with the addition of smoked cheese on top, as the flavour works beautifully with the caramelised cauliflower.

Serves 4


2 medium heads of cauliflower, leaves removed
100g butter
500ml milk
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp thyme leaves
50g breadcrumbs (panko or homemade from stale bread)
100g smoked Applewood cheese, grated
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Preheat the oven to 230°C/210°C fan/gas 8.

Cut the stem from the cauliflowers, trim and finely chop. Cut the cauliflowers into florets the size of a dessertspoon.

Heat half of the butter in a large saucepan over a medium-high heat. Add the chopped cauliflower stems and a third of the florets. Season well with salt and cook for around 15 minutes until a dark golden colour. Add the milk, mustard and Worcestershire sauce and blitz in a blender to make a smooth purée.

Melt the remaining 50g of butter. Place the remaining cauliflower florets on a roasting tray. Coat with the melted butter and season with salt and pepper. Roast for 25–30 minutes, stirring regularly, until golden.

Mix the roasted florets with the cauliflower purée and thyme leaves until all coated. Transfer to a large (approximately 20 x 30cm) pie dish or baking dish. Mix the breadcrumbs and cheese together and place on top of the cauliflower mixture.

Bake for 15–20 minutes until the top is golden, then remove from the oven and serve.

Find more recipes like this in Marcus Everyday, with photography by Susan Bell (HarperCollins, £20). Grab your copy here.