Cheesy Gratins

This basic gratin recipe can be used in so many different ways. Here are a few of my daughter’s favourites. For older children 1 year + you can add 1/4 teaspoon of Dijon mustard to the cheese sauce for added flavour (add just as you finish the sauce).

prep time 10 mins
cooking time 10 mins
 

             master cheese sauce recipe

  • 1/2 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 150ml whole milk
  • 2.5 tablespoons pasteurised cheddar cheese, grated

Warm the milk in a pan, it shouldn't break even a bubble, it just needs to be warmed through and not cold from the fridge. 

Melt the butter over a medium heat, add the flour and stir to form a paste (roux), cook this out for 2 minutes so that there is no taste of raw flour. Add the slightly warmed milk slowly stirring all the time, I find a whisk the easiest way of tackling lumps (but by heating the milk until its just warm you should avoid lumps).

Once the sauce has started to thicken, take off the heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the grated cheese and stir into the sauce; reserve 1/2 a tablespoon of the grated cheese to sprinkle on top of the finished gratin before baking.

 
cheesy-gratin_b.jpg
 

cheesy broccoli + cauliflower gratin

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Cook the broccoli and cauliflower florets in boiling water until just cooked, not over cooked as they will cook further in the oven. Then fold the florets through the basic cheese sauce. Pour into an ovenproof dish, a ramekin dish makes a great portion size; then sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Place in the oven for around 15 minutes until bubbling.

Cool and serve.

  • 4-6 broccoli florets, depending on size
  • 4-6 cauliflower florets, depending on size
 

cheesy pasta + tomato gratin

  • 100g cooked pasta
  • 6 cherry tomatoes, chopped
  • Or, 2 tinned plum tomatoes, drained of any liquid and chopped

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Cook the pasta in boiling water until just cooked (following the packet instructions), do not over cook, as the pasta will cook further in the oven. Gently fold the cooked pasta and tomatoes through the sauce. Pour into an ovenproof dish, a ramekin dish makes a great portion size; then sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Place in the oven for 15 for around 15 minutes until bubbling.

Cool and serve.

 

cheesy salmon pasta gratin

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Cook the pasta in boiling water until just cooked (following the packet instructions); do not over cook as it will cook further in the oven. Cook the salmon, I brush with olive oil and bake in the oven for 5-6 minutes (depend on fillet thickness), or until cooked. Set aside to slightly cool and then flake being careful to remove any bones. Gently fold the cooked pasta and salmon through the sauce. Pour into an ovenproof dish, a ramekin dish makes a great portion size. Then sprinkle with the remaining cheese; place in the oven for around 15 minutes until bubbling.

Cool and serve.

  • 100g cooked pasta
  • 25-50g salmon
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Oven proof dish, a ramekin dish makes a great portion size
 
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