Suzanne’s Recipe 38 – 2014 Gratin de Choux-Fleur et Champignons a l’Emmental

IMG_8809 (400x274) (2)One of my favourite cheeses for cooking is French Emmental as I love the toasty smell when it is grilled. My recipe this week is an easy and delicious baked cauliflower cheese with mushrooms. To make it slightly different from the usual, I cooked some large field mushrooms and lined the dish with these then added the cooked cauliflower and a creamy cheese and mushroom Béchamel sauce . I grated Emmental over the top and grilled it then added some crisp fried bacon pieces on top which gives a salty crunch to the dish. To pair with this dish I chose a Triennes Rosé from Provence as I needed a fairly delicate wine to pair with the cheese sauce and some depth as well, to match the mushrooms and grilled Emmental.


Ingredients for 4 guests:

  • 1 large cauliflower head
  • 1 punnet large field mushrooms
  • 60g Flour
  • 100g Butter
  • 500ml Milk
  • Sprigs of fresh parsley
  • 200g Emmental
  • 100g Bacon slices (Optional)
  • Salt and pepper

A bottle of Triennes Rosé wine from Provence available at the French Market shop


  1. Preheat oven to 180C degrees
  2. Grate the Emmental cheese finely
  3. Check mushrooms are clean, remove the stalks of the mushrooms. trim off the dried ends.Leave caps whole and chop stalks finely.
  4. Wash and cut cauliflower into small florets
  5. Cook (or grill) the bacon strips in a frying pan until completely crisp. Remove from pan and chop into small pieces
  6. Place the mushroom caps upside down in a large baking pan. Cut 40g butter into small blocks and place in the mushroom caps and bake in the oven for about 10 minutes until soft. Remove from the oven.
  7.  Boil cauliflower in salted water (or steam) until tender about 12 minutes then strain off water.
  8.  To make the bechamel sauce gently melt 60g butter in a heavy based saucepan.
  9. Add the chopped pieces of mushroom stalks and cook gently for a few minutes until soft.
  10. Add 60g flour and stir in briskly with a wooden spoon untill completely mixed with the melted butter, cook for a few minutes until lightly golden colour.
  11. Take pan off the heat and add all the milk at once, stir in well and return to the heat.
  12. Add pepper and salt to taste. Continue stirring the mixture over a medium heat until the sauce thickens.
  13. Add half of the grated cheese and stir in well. Cook for a few minutes stirring all the time until you have a thick creamy sauce with out lumps.
  14. Remove the cooked mushrooms caps from the baking pan and pour off excess cooking liquid.
  15. Turn on the grill of your oven.
  16. Line the base of a deep casserole dish with the mushroom caps upside down.
  17. Chop some fresh parsley over the mushrooms.
  18. Top with the cooked florets of cauliflower.
  19. Pour over the cheese and mushroom sauce so that all the cauliflower is covered.
  20. Sprinkle the rest of the grated Emmental across the top of the sauce. Bake under the grill until the Emmental is golden brown
  21. Remove from grill and sprinkle the chopped bacon over the top.
  22. Serve straight away while hot.

I recommend pairing this tasty dish with a glass of Triennes Rosé from Provence.

Click here for a pdf copyFrench Market Recipe 38 – Gratin de Choux-fleur aux Chempignons et de l’Emmental

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