Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Review: Broccoli Gratin

I'm a big fan of gratins, so when I saw an easy recipe for Broccoli Gratin in Martha's Everyday Food magazine, it quickly got ripped out and added to my burgeoning to-try pile; no matter that I'm the only one in the house that will eat broccoli. 

Very simple to make and tasty to boot, it would make a perfect side dish to a weeknight dinner ... or even your Thanksgiving table.  Was it a wow?  No, but a solid performer.  I mean, really, we're talking about broccoli here - is there such a thing as a wow broccoli recipe?

The only change I would make next time is that instead of chopping the broccoli florets finely, as the recipe calls for, I'd do a rougher chop, because chopping them so small made the dish a little more mushy than I'd like. 

Broccoli Gratin
Recipe courtesy of Everyday Food magazine

Serves 6

3 slices white sandwich bread
3 tablespoons olive oil
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups whole milk
2 heads broccoli (about 2 pounds total), florets finely chopped, stalks peeled and finely chopped  (don't chop so fine, rough chop a bit better)
1 cup shredded white cheddar (4 ounces)

Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with rack in upper third. In a food processor, pulse bread and 1 tablespoon oil until large crumbs form; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium. Whisk in flour; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Bring to a boil; add broccoli. Reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until broccoli is tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in 3/4 cup cheese.

Transfer mixture to a shallow 1 1/2 quart baking dish; top with breadcrumbs and remaining cheese. Bake until breadcrumbs are golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before serving.

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