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I learned to properly pronounce gratin (thats grah-tahn, folks) at the Greens Restaurant in San Francisco a few years back. Greens is a lovely vegetarian restaurant where vegetarian chef superhero Deborah Madison cut her teeth. I found this recipe in my favorite of her books, Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. 

This gratin is rich and satisfying – without being weighed down by too much butter and cheese. We enjoyed it with a salad of  roasted beets and greens, and a delicious Paso Robles syrah. This is my adaptation of the dish… an approximation of my process in the kitchen Monday afternoon.

  • 1 medium butternut squash, seeded, peeled and cubed
  • 1-2 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 2-3 tablespoons fresh sage
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1/8 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup grated fontina
  • 3/4 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground pepper
  1. pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. saute onion in olive oil over medium heat until translucent. add sage and thyme and cook until lightly caramelized. season with salt and pepper.
  3. lightly oil the bottom of a gratin or casserole dish. create abase layer of caramelized onions.
  4. toss squash cubes in flour and brown in a skillet. Add parsley and season with salt and pepper. Layer over onions in casserole dish.
  5. Warm vegetable stock and pour over layers – cover with 1/4 cup grated cheese.
  6. Cover and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  7. Remove from oven and top with breadcrumbs and remaining cheese. Bake uncovered for 25 minutes or until liquid is absorbed.

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