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Mac and Cheese-style Cauliflower
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Makes: 8 (1 cup servings) / Preparation time: 15 minutes

Total time: 1 hour

Look for nutritional yeast at health food stores and some grocery stores. It’s adds a cheesy and nutty flavor to many dishes. It’s optional in this recipe. To make your own bread crumbs, tear firm, fresh bread into pieces and whirl in a food processor or blender until crumbs form.

8 heaping cups cauliflower florets

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 shallot, peeled, minced

2 cloves garlic, peeled, minced

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 cups 1 percent low-fat milk

2 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 cup nutritional yeast, optional

1 pinch cayenne pepper

2 egg yolks

1 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs or panko bread crumbs

Fresh chopped parsley or snipped chives for garnish, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat the bottom of a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add cauliflower florets and boil 5 to 7 minutes or until just tender. Drain and reserve 1 cup cooking liquid; set aside.

In the same pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic and saute about 2 minutes. Whisk in flour and cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Whisk in milk and { cup of the reserved cooking liquid; cook 7 to 10 minutes or until sauce is thickened, whisking constantly. If the sauce is too thick at this point, add more of the reserved cooking liquid. Remove from heat and stir in cheese, nutritional yeast, cayenne pepper and egg yolks until cheese is melted. Fold in cauliflower.

Spread cauliflower mixture in the baking dish. Sprinkle with bread crumbs. Spray bread crumbs with cooking spray. Bake 30 minutes or until casserole is hot and bubbly and bread crumbs are crisp and brown. Garnish with fresh chopped parsley or chives, if desired.

Adapted from Vegetarian Times magazine, January/February 2012 issue.

273 calories (53 percent from fat), 16 grams fat (9 grams sat. fat), 18 grams carbohydrates, 16 grams protein, 314 mg sodium, 94 mg cholesterol, 4 grams fiber.

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