The vegetable is delicious served with a bit of butter or a squeeze of lemon, but certain occasions call for something special, and this gratin is it. This recipe is also a great way to use up those cheese ends in the fridge.
Recipe courtesy of Williams-Sonoma
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1/2 cup thinly sliced yellow onion
- 1/2 bay leaf
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 1/2 pound broccoli
- 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 1 cup fresh bread crumbs
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup mixed shredded cheeses, such as cheddar or Gruyère
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 In a saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, until the mixture forms a loose ball, about 1 minute.
- 2 Remove from the heat and whisk in the milk, 1 cup at a time, mixing after each addition until smooth. Return the pan to medium heat and whisk until the mixture comes to a boil.
- 3 Add the onion, bay leaf and nutmeg, and season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve into a large bowl; keep warm. You should have about 2½ cups sauce.
- 4 Preheat an oven to 375°F. Butter an 11-by-7-inch baking dish. Fill a large saucepan three-fourths full of water and bring to a boil over high heat.
- 5 Meanwhile, cut the heads from the broccoli stalks. Divide the heads into bite-size florets, and then peel and thinly slice the stalks. Add 3 tablespoons salt and the broccoli to the boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Drain well.
- 6 In a small bowl, stir together the Parmigiano-Reggiano, bread crumbs and olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
- 7 Add the mixed cheeses to the hot sauce, stir to melt, and then add the broccoli and cream.
- 8 Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and sprinkle the bread crumb mixture evenly on top. Bake until the gratin bubbles and the top is golden, about 30 minutes.