Braised Cardoon Gratin
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Trim cardoons on both ends. With a sharp vegetable peeler, remover outer thick strands and discard. Drizzle an 8 by 10 inch shallow baking dish with the olive oil. Lay cardoons in pan. Cut them if necessary to fit length of pan. Spread them evenly. Sprinkle with sliced shallots. Season with salt and pepper. Pour in chicken stock and lemon juice. Cover with foil and braise in oven for 20 minutes. Remove foil and continue to braise until cardoons are tender.
Evenly pour béchamel sauce over cardoons. Place under broiler for 3 to 5 minutes until golden and bubbly.
In a medium saucepan, melt butter on medium heat. Add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Remove pan from heat and in a steady stream whisk in cold milk. Stir well until smooth. Return to medium heat and stir until thick and béchamel begins to boil. Season with salt and pepper. Add nutmeg. Add the crumbled goat cheese and stir.