Country Style - - COUNTRY CHEF -

SERVES 4 20g but­ter 1 ta­ble­spoon plain flour 1 cup milk 1 cau­li­flower, cut into flo­rets 12 fresh dates, pit­ted 1 cup caster sugar ½ cup roasted hazel­nuts, roughly chopped ½ cup grated ched­dar

Pre­heat oven to 160°C. Line 2 bak­ing trays with bak­ing pa­per. Melt but­ter in a small saucepan over a medium heat. Add flour and stir un­til com­bined. Cook, stir­ring, for 1 minute or un­til mix­ture is bub­bling. Re­move from heat. Grad­u­ally add milk, stir­ring con­stantly, un­til well com­bined. Cook, stir­ring con­stantly, over a medium heat un­til mix­ture boils. Re­duce heat to low and sim­mer for 2 min­utes or un­til bechamel sauce thick­ens. Re­move from heat. Cover sur­face of sauce with bak­ing pa­per to pre­vent a skin form­ing. Mean­while, cook cau­li­flower in a large saucepan of boil­ing wa­ter for 10 min­utes or un­til ten­der. Drain and re­turn to pan. Cover to keep warm. Tear dates into 3cm pieces and place on a pre­pared tray. Roast for 5 min­utes or un­til heated through. Place sugar in a small saucepan over a medium-low heat, shak­ing pan oc­ca­sion­ally, un­til sugar dis­solves. Sim­mer for 5 min­utes or un­til tof­fee is a rich golden colour. Re­move from heat. Grad­u­ally stir in ⅔ cup wa­ter, tak­ing care as mix­ture will spit, un­til com­bined. (If mix­ture be­comes hard, stir over a medium-low heat un­til a golden sauce forms.) Add a pinch of sea salt flakes and stir to com­bine. Place hazel­nuts in a shal­low heat­proof dish. Pour tof­fee sauce over hazel­nuts and toss to coat. Pre­heat a grill on medium-high. Place cau­li­flower flo­rets on re­main­ing pre­pared tray. Spoon bechamel sauce over cau­li­flower and top with ched­dar. Cook un­der grill for 8–10 min­utes or un­til cheese melts and is golden brown. Trans­fer cau­li­flower to a serv­ing plat­ter. Add dates and hazel­nuts, and spoon over tof­fee sauce.

Cau­li­flower gratin with roasted dates & hazelnut pra­line The smooth, seam­less 2014 Margan Fam­ily Semil­lon has rich, soft ap­peal, and great fruit and acid bal­ance.

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