Cauliflower Gratin With Manchego and Almond Sauce

Total Time
Prep 30 mins
Cook 30 mins

This outrageously rich sauce, flavored with salty, nutty Manchego, gets poured on sautéed cauliflower and baked until it's golden and bubbling. MAKE AHEAD: The gratin can be prepared through Step 4 and refrigerated overnight. Bring it to room temperature before baking.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°; In a small saucepan, heat the half-and-half until steaming, then transfer it to a food processor or blender; Add the 1/2 cup of whole almonds and process until finely ground; Let stand for 10 minutes; Strain the half-and-half through a fine sieve set over a bowl, pressing on the almonds to extract as much liquid as possible; Discard the ground almonds.
  2. In a medium saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter; Add the flour and whisk over moderately high heat for 1 minute; Add the milk and the half-and-half and cook, whisking constantly, until thickened, 5 minutes; Remove from the heat; Add 3/4 cup of the Manchego and whisk until melted; Whisk in the nutmeg; season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.
  3. In a large skillet, bring 1/2 inch of salted water to a boil; Add the cauliflower, cover and cook over high heat until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes; Drain the cauliflower in a colander; Wipe out the skillet.
  4. Melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in the skillet; Add the onion and cook over moderately high heat, stirring until lightly browned, about 5 minutes; Add the cauliflower and cook, stirring until lightly golden, about 2 minutes; Season lightly with salt and pepper; Transfer the cauliflower to a 7-by-10-inch glass or ceramic baking dish and spread the Manchego sauce on top.
  5. Sprinkle the gratin with the remaining cheese, the 2 tablespoons of chopped almonds and the paprika and bake in the center of the oven for 20 minutes, or until bubbling and browned on top; Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Most Helpful

This was a very nice vegetable dish. Lovely combination of flavors. I did use frozen cauliflower florets, thawed and drained. I also did not strain the almonds from the half and half and it was delicious. Served this as a side dish to Barcelona Style Pork Tenderloin With Sherry & Peppers. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

swissms February 10, 2012

I love Manchego, this is very close to what we are doing for Christmas Eve Dinner. I like the detail in the instructions, NcMysteryShopper has done the home work on this one.

Chummers December 23, 2009

I made this for Thanksgiving 2006. It was really great. I loved the aroma of the almonds and 1/2 and 1/2. I will definately make this again. Thanks :)

Queen uh Cuisine September 15, 2007