Thursday, August 27, 2009

Libby's Menu Part 2

The YamDaisy Cafe idea is to serve four meals over the day. Our guest menu this week comes from Libby. In Part 1 we looked at her hearty Minestrone and the Spetsofai, a dish I hadn't heard of before.

SOUP: Minestrone with Bread and Cheese
MAIN 1: Spetsofai with Rice
MAIN 2: Cauliflower with White Sauce served with Roasted Potatoes and Parsnips and Steamed Green Beans
FRUIT DESSERT: Apple Crumble and Creamy Yoghurt

Today is all about the second main, which will be ready to serve for a late lunch, an early evening meal, or to take home and have for supper. And the Fruit Dessert, for those who feel it just isn't dinner without it.
I made Cauliflower Cheese last night, especially so I could take a photo for the blog. (The lengths I am prepared to go for your sakes readers!). I tried a recipe with a bit of a difference: in between the cauliflower and the sauce was a sprinkle of onion and bacon made by cutting one onion and two rashers of bacon into small pieces and frying them till just about crispy.
However, this was not a complete success. Both my daughter and I decided we preferred the classic version, and since that is the one Libby nominated, that is the recipe I will give.

1 medium cauliflower in florets cooked until just tender, drained, and placed in a baking dish
- I fancied big pieces of cauliflower this time, thinking the hills and valleys of the dish would be fun, and to see how it would go having each piece (or two) as a serving.
Melt 40 g butter in a saucepan
Add 40 g plain flour and stir with a wooden spoon until toasty. Giving this a bit of time really adds to the final taste. You can smell when it is nice and toasty, the colour doesn't change.
425 ml (1 3/4 cups) milk - gradually stir in, mixing each bit until it is completely smooth, so you won't have lumps. You can go quicker and quicker as it becomes more liquid. Then bring to a simmer.
Add salt and pepper
1 tsp dijon mustard (or mustard of your choice: powder works)
1 1/2 cups of grated cheddar (or similar) cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
Mix this all up and then pour it over the cauliflower.
Sprinkle 1/3 cup of fresh breadcrumbs and another 1/4 cup of grated parmesan cheese over the top.
Bake at 180C until golden.
My recipe says 15 minutes, but I give it longer than that. As it cooks, the cheesey soft sauce melds into the cauliflower and makes it one fabulous dish. Don't hurry it! I think mine took a good half an hour.
Libby has it served with baked potatoes and parsnips, with their two different textures, and then set off with the Steamed Green Beans. Well, that is just perfect!

PS Why didn't we like the bacon and onion addition? - well, it messed up that perfect melding and added a fattiness we didn't need with the cheesey wonderfulness. But add it if you like!

Take a deep breath those of you who cannot bear to think of a crumble with additions like coconut and sunflower seeds. This is Libby's menu, and we are making it the way she likes it! Don't worry, it is delicious! Libby doesn't like rich desserts, so this one is perfect: tasty and crunchy, but (unless you eat the entire thing!) won't leave you feeling too exhausted and heavy at the end of the meal.

Place 500g Stewed Apple and 1/4 cup of sultanas, mixed, in a pie dish. Warm. (The microwave is great for this if you are doing it at home!)

Melt 50 g butter in a bowl (more microwaving!)
Add 1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup plain flour
1/2 cup dessicated coconut
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
1/2 tsp cinnamon
Mix well and spread evenly over the apple.
Drizzle 2 tbsp of honey over the top.
Bake at 180C for about half an hour until golden and smelling fantastic.
Serve with Greek Yoghurt.


  1. I loved the Cauliflower Cheese recipe , Joy !
    It's really wonderful and I assure you I'll prepare it for my family :)

  2. I love winter veggies and I've always looked for a different way to cook cauliflower. I can't wait to try it when the time comes.

  3. Thanks for post. It’s really imformative stuff.
    I really like to read.Hope to learn a lot and have a nice experience here! my best regards guys!


  4. The cauliflower recipe sounds great!!!

  5. I love the idea of coconut in a crumble - can't believe I've not had it!

  6. Thanks so much for your comments! Claudia: the Cauliflower Cheese is quite similar to the lovely veggie casserole I made from your recipe. Yiota, Erica, I hope you try it and like it, it is an Australian classic I think!
    And coconut is classic here in crumbles too! So toasty and tasty!