Cauliflower Rice Casserole
Adapted from Italian Vegetarian Cooking by Paola Gavin
|1 ||small onion, finely diced|
| ||olive oil|
|1 clv||garlic, minced|
|2 T||parsley, minced|
|1 c||raw brown rice|
|2 c||boiling water or chicken broth|
|1⁄4 c||freshly grated parmesan or asiago cheese|
|1 ||medium head cauliflower|
|1⁄3 c||gruyere or Swiss cheese, shredded|
| ||salt and pepper to taste|
Sauté onion in small amount of olive oil until softened, then stir in garlic and parsley and cook another minute. Stir in rice until coated with oil, and then add boiling water or broth, and salt. When mixture comes to a full boil cover, reduce heat to low simmer and cook about 40 minutes until rice is tender and water absorbed. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes then stir in freshly grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese. Set aside.
While rice is cooking, cut one medium head cauliflower into bite size pieces and steam until just barely tender. Drain and set aside.
For cheese sauce:
Melt butter, stir in flour and cook, stirring, over low heat 2-3 minutes until well incorporated and bubbly. Do not brown. Stir in milk (low-fat is fine); raise heat and cook, stirring constantly until thickened and simmering. Remove from heat and stir in Swiss or Gruyere cheese and salt and pepper to taste.
To assemble casserole, oil a 9-inch square (or comparable) baking pan and spoon in half the rice mixture. Spread with 1/3 of the cheese sauce and then layer in half the cauliflower. Repeat these layers and end with the final third of the cheese sauce. Bake at 375F until bubbly, slightly puffed and golden brown, about 25 minutes.
Note: If white rice is preferred, simmer rice mixture only 15 minutes. This recipe would probably also be good with steamed cabbage or broccoli.