Ciao Italia Family Classics
Mary Ann returns to her family's humble beginnings to bring us a treasure trove of more than 200 time-honored recipes.
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For the Mold
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/4 cup plain fine bread crumbs
1 head (2 pounds) cauliflower, cored and outer leaves removed and florets cut into small 11/4-inch pieces
3 large eggs
3 tablespoons minced parsley
1 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese
1/2 cup Montasio cheese, grated
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
Grinding black pepper
For the White Sauce
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons King Arthur unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup Half ‘n Half
1 cup reserved cauliflower cooking water
1 teaspoons find sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
Brush a 9 1/2 x 2 1/2-inch deep spring form pan or soufflé-type pan with the melted butter and coat it with the breadcrumbs. Shake out any loose crumbs and refrigerate the mold until ready to fill.
Fill a large pot with 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Add the florets, cover the pot and cook until the florets are very tender, about 6 minutes.
Drain the cauliflower, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.
Transfer the cauliflower to a food processor and pulse several times until smooth. You can also use an immersion blender to smooth out the cauliflower. Transfer the cauliflower to a large bowl and whisk in the eggs, parsley, cheeses, salt and pepper.
Cover and refrigerate while you make the sauce.
In a medium size pan over medium heat, melt the butter and whisk in the flour to make a smooth paste. Whisk in the Half ‘n Half and reserved water. Whisk in the salt and nutmeg and cook until the mixture thickens.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Transfer the sauce to the bowl with cauliflower and combine well. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the top.
Bake for 20 to 45 minutes or until the sformato sets and is lightly browned.
Remove the sformato from the oven and scoop from the pan to serve or, if using a spring form pan, wait 5 minutes, then unlatch the sides and lift off. Cut into sedges to serve.
Serve warm or at room temperature.
This recipe is featured on show 2224 – Cauliflower / Broccolo.
This recipe is from Ciao Italia Family Classics by Mary Ann Esposito.
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