Midday Fix: Chef Aram Reed makes farmer’s market vegetable gratin

Chef Aram Reed

www.chefaramreed.com

Farmer’s Market Vegetable Gratin

Ingredients:
2 to 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced into 1 1/2 to 2 inches in diameter
1 medium yellow squash, ends trimmed and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 medium zucchini, ends trimmed and cut into 1/4 inch slices
1 Japanese eggplant or other small narrow eggplant, end trimmed and cut into ¼ inch slices
canola oil
2 1/2 cups cups coarsely chopped onions
2 garlic cloves, finely grated
kosher salt
1 Tbs + 1 tsp chopped thyme
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/2 cup dried bread crumbs

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 350F.  Set a cooling rack on a baking sheet. Heat about 2 Tbs canola oil in a large pan over medium heat.  Add onions and garlic, and season with salt. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook onions until translucent, but without browning, for about 20 minutes. Stir in 1 Tbs of the thyme. Combine the yellow squash, zucchini, and eggplant in a large bowl, toss with the olive oil, and season with salt. Drizzle the slices of tomatoes with olive oil and season with salt. Combine the Parmesan, bread crumbs, and remaining 1 tsp thyme in a small bowl. Spread the onion mixture in the bottom of a 13½-by-9½-inch gratin dish or 13-inch round shallow baking dish. Layer the vegetables in the dish, working on the diagonal. Arrange a layer of overlapping slices of one-third of the zucchini around the outside edge of the dish. Sprinkle 2 to 3 tbsp of the cheese mixture over the top. Make a row of overlapping slices of yellow squash slightly overlapping the zucchini, and sprinkle 2 to 3 tbsp of the cheese mixture over the top. Make a third row with overlapping slices of tomatoes, slightly overlapping the zucchini, and sprinkle with cheese mixture. Do the same with the eggplant and continue making overlapping rows of the remaining vegetables, and sprinkle the top with any remaining cheese mixture and a light sprinkling of salt. Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the vegetables are completely tender and offer no resistance when pierced with a knife. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Turn on the broiler. Just before serving, place the gratin under the broiler to brown the top.

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