this is a light gratin that substitutes almond milk for the hard stuff (cream, flour, butter, etc). if you want a creamier gratin, you can add a couple tablespoons of flour to the sauce. almond milk burns easily so pay special attention to that.
butternut squash, cauliflower, and hazelnut gratin
1 large butternut squash, peeled and chopped (save the skins for soup stock!)
1 large head cauliflower, cut into small florets
10 springs parsley, finely chopped and divided into two
3 sage leaves, finely chopped and divided into two
1 1/4 c almond milk
2 c gruyere, grated
2 X 1/2 tsp paprika
sea salt and chili flakes to taste
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 allspice berry crushed (just press down the blade of your knife)
3/4 c hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
preheat oven to 400.
in separate bowls, drizzle the veggies in olive oil, salt, paprika, sage, parsley, and crushed red pepper or black pepper. bake on sheets at 400 for 30 minutes, or until tender and browned at the edges. set the veggies aside for later, or transfer directly into a small gratin dish– i used a 10X10 1 or 2 inch deep dish. spread the vegetables evenly in the dish, and sprinkle the hazelnuts over them.
heat the almond milk in a medium pot on low. once its hot (7 minutes?) stir in the cheese, nutmeg, and allspice, and continue to stir constantly with a whisk. if you don’t, it will get clumpy and burn on the bottom. so keep stirring. do this for 5 minutes, until the mixture is smooth and hot– if you stopped stirring it should begin to simmer.
pour the sauce over the veggies and rearrange so that the surface is even. transfer to the oven. bake at 375 for 40 minutes. remove the gratin to grate parmesan onto to the top, and bake for five more minutes then remove.