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Cauliflower and Chestnut Gratin

If using fresh chestnuts, score them with an X, then cook them in boiling water until soft, about 20 minutes. Drain and peel the chestnuts.

  • Servings: 6
Cauliflower and Chestnut Gratin

Source: Martha Stewart Living, December 2005/2006


  • Coarse salt
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), separated into stems and medium florets
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup homemade or low-sodium store-bought chicken stock
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups shelled chestnuts (fresh, jarred, or thawed frozen), halved lengthwise
  • 3/4 cup (2 ounces) grated Gruyere cheese


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add salt. Add florets, and cook until just tender, about 6 minutes. Drain in a colander, and rinse under cold running water until cool. Let dry on paper towels.

  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Finely chop stems to make 1 1/2 cups. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat; add stems, shallots, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pale golden brown, about 4 minutes. Add wine, stock, and cream. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until liquid has reduced by about half, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool slightly. Stir in horseradish, and season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Puree mixture in a blender until smooth. Stir in thyme.

  3. Spread florets and chestnuts in a 9-by-12-inch oval gratin dish. Season with salt and pepper. Pour puree on top, and gently stir to combine slightly. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake until bubbling and just golden brown, 30 to 35 minutes.

Reviews (8)

  • ehrisch 6 Mar, 2013

    Loved this. I eliminated a few steps that made it quicker. I did not pre-boil the cauliflower, nor did I separately cook the stems. I cut the cauliflower into florets with stems attached. Sautéed the other ingredients (shallots, wine, etc), and did not puree anything. I simply poured the other ingredients over the cut cauliflower and baked. I did not use garlic- just not a flavor I thought would work well with cauliflower and shallots are a tiny bit garlicky anyway. I used a bit less horseradish

  • LAGuy 21 Dec, 2010

    This is a show-stopper sidedish. There are quite a few steps for a vegetable dish, but if you want a vegetable to take along to a covered-dish party this is a great one.

  • npigas 23 Dec, 2008

    Can anyone tell me what else could I use instead of horseradish ,maybe ginger , because it is not easy to find horseradish where I leave.Thank you

  • xingchin 1 Mar, 2008

    Very good dish - add additional cheese and try using 1 cup chesnuts and 1/2 cup walnuts.

  • queeniemum 3 Jan, 2008

    This was tasty, but a lot of steps for a side dish.

  • imnthgarden 31 Dec, 2007

    Unfortunately, more liquid cooked out of the cauliflower, which was a surprise. We did not enjoy this as much as other veggie recipes. It sounded good...

  • jetgrrly 25 Dec, 2007

    Great side dish! It smells so good while baking that you cant wait to dig in. Highly recommended!

  • crafty_chell_71 20 Dec, 2007

    Holiday side dish, chestnuts, cauliflower

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