This is a very yummy cheese casserole that makes a great side dish or entree. I really like the cauliflower puree in this dish, it is even delicious on its own. You only need 2 cups of puree for this dish so you could make more rice or eat it as soup. I really like using white cheddar with peppercorns for this entree but you could use any creamy cheese that you have laying around.
1 cup brown rice, rinsed
3 garlic cloves, diced
1 cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/2 cup sliced leeks, sliced
4 cups vegetable broth, 1 cup separated
4 oz peppercorn white cheddar, shredded
1/2 tsp thyme
Place 2 cups of vegetable broth in a large pot and bring to medium heat. Place the cauliflower in the pot, cover and cook for 15-20 minutes or until cauliflower is soft. Preheat the oven to 350.
While the cauliflower is cooking bring 2 cups of vegetable broth to a broil and add in the rice, then bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 15 minutes or until the broth has been absorbed. Once the cauliflower is soft use a food processor or immersion blender to puree and set aside. (I like to press the mixture through a sieve to make it extra smooth but it is not necessary.)
In a separate pan heat 1 tbs of olive oil to medium heat and saute the garlic and leeks for 3-5 minutes. Place the cooked rice, leeks & garlic, and cauliflower puree into a baking dish and toss well. Mix in 1/2 of the shredded cheese and seasoning. Top with the remaining cheese and bake for 15 minutes then broil on high for 5 minutes or until cheese is golden and crispy.
I served my cheesy rice with Sauteed Leeks & Greens and a baked sweet potato.