A cheesy cauliflower rarebit pie wrapped up in a rye crust. This special dish is perfect for a dinner party or special occasion.Jump to Recipe
Have you ever had Stouffer's Welsh Rarebit? When I was a kid (and long after that), this was one of my favorite dinners. Mom wasn't an adventurous cook, so our version always came from a box with the Stouffer's banner plastered across it.
This recipe is kind of like a cheesy cauliflower casserole with that Welsh Rarebit tang, wrapped up as a slab pie with a rye crust. And yes, it's just as amazing as it sounds. Think of it as a Welsh rarebit pie with cauliflower.
🤷♀️ What is Rarebit?
Rarebit usually refers to Welsh rarebit, and it's super easy to make. Cheddar cheese, Worcestershire sauce, and mustard make up the base, along with some kind of liquid. Beef broth is typical, but this recipe nails it with a dark Stout beer like Guinness.
🧅 Main Ingredients + Notes
For the all of the ingredients, measurements and directions, go to the Recipe Card at the bottom of this post.
- All purpose flour
- Rye flour
- Unsalted butter
- Vegetable shortening
- Ice water
- Fresh thyme
- Dark beer - such at Guinness.
- Fresh parsley
- Whole milk
- Worcestershire sauce - use Annie's Worcestershire sauce which is vegetarian. Standard Worcestershire sauce contains anchovies.
- Coleman's mustard
- Extra sharp cheddar cheese
- Parmesan cheese
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🔪 Recommended Equipment
- Food processor
- Baking sheet - use a quarter baking sheet size
- Rolling pin
- Parchment paper
- Large skillet
- Chef's knife
- Small mixing bowl
🏔 Tips for Baking Rarebit Pie at High Altitudes
I used Light Rye flour, and didn't need to make any adjustment for liquid in the crust recipe. If you use Dark Rye flour, however, you may need to add another 1 - 2 tablespoons of liquid if you're making this at 6000 ft and higher.
For altitudes 6000 ft and higher, I recommend increasing the liquid for the filling as follows: ⅔ cup whole milk instead of ½ cup, and 3 large eggs + 1 egg white instead of 3 large eggs.
Disclosure: This recipe was taken from the Pie Squared: Irresistibly Easy Sweet & Savory Slab Pies cookbook. I was provided a copy by the publisher, as well as an OXO quarter baking sheet which I used. All opinions are my own.
For another cauliflower tart, check out this roasted cauliflower tart with kale and tomatoes, all baked in a cheddar cheese crust.
Cheesy Cauliflower Rarebit Pie with a Rye Crust
- 1 ¾ cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, (225 grams)
- 1 cup rye flour, (100 grams)
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed and frozen for 20 minutes
- 8 tablespoons vegetable shortening, frozen for 20 minutes
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup ice water
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 ½ cups sliced shallots, about 5
- 6 stalks fresh thyme
- 1 pound cauliflower, cut into small florets, about 5 cups
- ½ cup dark beer, such as Guinness,
- ¼ cup finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley,
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup whole milk,
- 3 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- ½ teaspoon Coleman's mustard powder or other dry mustard powder
- 10 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, coarsely grated for about 2 ½ cups
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tablespoon water
- ¼ cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
For the crust...
- In the food processor, pulse the flours, butter, shortening, and salt until the fats are in small pieces coated with flour, about 15 times. Add ¼ cups of the water, and then 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing until the mixture almost forms a ball. Form the dough into a 6- by 4-inch rectangle using plastic wrap and a bench scraper to firmly press the dough into a cohesive form. Wrap tightly and refrigerate a minimum of 4 hours.
- Heat the oven to 425˚F; if you have one, place a baking stone or inverted baking sheet on the center rack to heat.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow it to warm slightly. Divide the dough into two pieces, one slightly larger than the other. Roll out the larger piece to 11" X 15", and transfer it to the slab pie pan, pressing the dough into the corners of the pan and allowing the excess to drape over the sides. Cover with plastic and refrigerate. Roll out the second piece of dough to 10 by 14 inches, place it on a lightly floured sheet of parchment, cover with plastic and refrigerate.
- Heat the olive oil in a deep skillet over medium heat until it shimmers. Add the shallots and thyme and cook until the shallots are browned on the edges. Fish out and discard the thyme. Add the cauliflower florets and stir to coat with oil. Increase the heat to medium-high, pour in the beer, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and steam the cauliflower until fork-tender, about 7 minutes. Uncover and continue to cook until all the liquid has evaporated, another 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the parsley, salt, and pepper. Cool to room temperature.Note: this step can be done while the dough is chilling at the end of Step 1.
- Fill the bottom crust with the cauliflower filling. Whisk together the milk, eggs, Worcestershire, and mustard in a small bowl, and fold in the cheddar cheese. Pour it over the cauliflower filling, and cover the filling with the top crust. Crimp and slash the top crust a few times with a sharp knife.
- Combine the egg yolk and water in a small bowl, and use a pastry brush to paint it on the top crust from edge to edge. Sprinkle with the grated Parmigiano, and slide the pie into the hot oven (on top of the baking stone or baking sheet if using. Bake for 20 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 375˚F and bake until the crust is bronzed and the filling is bubbling, 25-40 minutes. Cool slightly before slicing into portions.
Tho' I write to you from my home in Australia I was born in Estonia in the Baltics and these were virtually the only kind of pies we made whether cabbage & egg, carrot and raisins or a dozen other savoury or sweet kinds. Practical and crowd-pleasing ~! Like the rye crust naturally and the Guinness and the cauliflower I have not seen used . . may cut down a wee bit on the cheese but otherwise it is on the kitchen-to-do list . . .
The Wimpy Vegetarian
We live in the mountains, and it's very cold at night. It was such a wonderful dish to enjoy while the wind blew outside. And I was surprised that the amount of cheese called for didn't overwhelm the pie. I hope you give the recipe a try - it's also very amenable to adjustments 🙂 BTW, years ago, I took a cooking class from someone from Eastern Europe, and she demonstrated a fascinating meat and cabbage filled pastry similar to a pie. I need to look it up now that you've jogged my memory! It was delicious.