CAULIFLOWER GRATIN

2 large heads cauliflower (I used purple and yellow, but any colors work!)

1 ½ teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

7 tablespoons butter, divided

4 tablespoons flour

1 ½ cups milk

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

1 cup Jarlsberg (or good quality Swiss), shredded

1 cup parmesan, grated

½ cup panko breadcrumbs

2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

Put a large pot of water on the stove to boil.  Remove the leaves and core from each head of cauliflower and discard.  Break the head into evenly (or close to evenly) sized florets.

Add the florets to the boiling water and salt the water (about 1 tablespoon salt).  Cook for 6-8 minutes until the florets are tender but still have some firmness to them.  Drain in a colander.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Spray a 9” x 13” baking dish with non-stick spray and spread the drained cauliflower in an even layer.  Sprinkle the thyme leaves over the top.

Melt 4 tablespoons of the butter in a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Add the flour and cook for 1 minute, whisking, until foamy.  Add the milk, salt, and pepper to the pan and continue cooking, whisking occasionally until a thick sauce forms, about 2 minutes.  Stir in the cheeses until a smooth thick, cheesy sauce forms.

Pour the cheese sauce evenly over the cauliflower.

Melt the remaining 3 tablespoons butter in the saucepan that you made your cheese sauce in.  Add the panko and cook, stirring until the crumbs are lightly browned.  Sprinkle them evenly over the top of the casserole.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until bubbly.  Garnish with parsley and serve.

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