This bake is what you need on a cold Sunday- creamy and soft with a crunchy top- it’s marvellously comforting.
Serves 4 as a main
or 6+ as part of a spread
Cooking time: 30 mins
Prep time: 10 mins
130g olive oil (80g to poach, 50g for the roux sauce)
100ml dry cider/ dry white wine/ 90ml water+ 1 tbsp ACV and a dash of maple syrup
4 leeks- trimmed and cut into 1cm thick rounds
1 medium cauliflower- split into florets
40g GF plain flour
300ml hot vegetable stock
2 sprigs fresh thyme
280ml soy cream
200ml plant milk (oat or almond preferably)
1 tsp wholegrain mustard
3tbsp nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp salt
Black pepper to taste
For the topping:
2 slices bread- coarsely torn
20g walnuts- broken
20g GF oats
1.5 tbsp olive oil
0.5 tsp salt, some black pepper
- Steam cauliflower florets (or boil gently in salted water) until almost cooked, remove pan from heat and steam dry the cauliflower in a colander.
- Heat a large, heavy based pan for which you have a lid, over a medium heat. Add 80g of the olive oil and the cider/wine/ACV water. When its bubbling away, add the sliced leeks. Stir and shake, then cover the pan with its lid.
- Reduce the heat and cook for 8-10 minutes until the leeks are tender. Then tip the leeks and their poaching juices into a medium mixing bowl and set aside.
- Make up 300ml of vegetable stock.
- Now for the roux sauce, return the pan to a medium heat and add the remaining 50g olive oil. When the oil is warm, stir in the flour and cook for a minute stirring well. Now gradually add the hot vegetable stock, thyme, soy cream, plant milk, and mustard. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring regularly until the sauce has thickened.
- Season the sauce with the nutritional yeast, salt and pepper. Then fold the cauliflower, and the juicy leeks into the pan with the sauce. Now spread this mixture out into a suitable ovenproof dish and smooth over.
- Preheat the oven to 180C fan. Mix and massage the topping ingredients together, then scatter this over the top of the dish.
- Bake for 20 minutes until golden on top and bubbling.