Tag Archives: gratin

Potato, Spinach, and Summer Squash Gratin AND Becky’s Famous Roasted Asparagus!

My non-vegan friends are often curious about what I can and can’t eat.  “I’d miss eggs!”  “I couldn’t do without cheese!” are the most common responses.  I admit, the first month of being vegan, I did miss both.  But now with recipes like this, those cravings are a thing of the past.  I found myself drooling just now while editing the images for this post.


Today’s post is based on this recipe from The Fat Free Vegan.  A few weeks ago, I made it very similarly to the original, subbing broccoli and kale for the broccoli rabe (because that’s what was in the fridge!).  It was love at first frittata-y, gratin-y, quiche-y bite, and I knew I’d found more than a recipe; I’d found a method I could apply to many of my former egg custard type recipes.  Oh stratas, how I’ve missed you!  Anyway, if you’re already vegan, you probably have what you need in your fridge.  Sub in whatever veggies you like/have on hand.  The potatoes make it hearty and filling, so I’d recommend keeping them to serve this as a main dish.


For the Gratin:

  • 1 pound small red potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • salt and pepper to taste for each layer
  • a small package of baby spinach, blanched
  • 1 smallish yellow squash, cut into half-moons and steamed
  • 1 smallish zucchini, cut into half moons and steamed
  • 1 (12 oz) package extra firm tofu, drained but not pressed of all its liquid
  • 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup plain non-dairy milk
  • 1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
  • 2 TBSP nutritional yeast
  • 1 heaping TBSP potato or corn starch
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp chipotle chile powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil or 2 tsp fresh chopped basil

For Becky’s Famous Roasted Asparagus:

  • 1 pound trimmed asparagus
  • cooking spray
  • sea salt

Preheat oven to 400F, and spray a 2 qt casserole or gratin dish.  Wash and cut the potatoes into 1/2 inch cubes and arrange in a single layer on a parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheet.  Bake for 20 minutes, stirring once after 10 minutes.  Remove from oven and set aside until ready to assemble your gratin.

chop and bake potatoes

While potatoes bake, cut squash into half-moons and steam until tender-crisp, about 5 minutes.  Blanch the spinach in boiling water until just wilted and drain.

slice and steam squash

In a blender, combine the remaining ingredients and process until smooth and pourable, adding additional non-dairy milk as needed.

tofu etc in blender

Assemble the gratin, starting with the potatoes.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

layer potatoes first

Next, layer on the spinach, season with salt and pepper.

layer blanched spinach

Then layer the squash on top of the spinach.  Separate by color if you like or mix them.  Again, sprinkle salt and pepper.

layer steamed squash

Pour the tofu mixture over the top, and using a spoon, gently move the veggies around without mixing the layers to allow the tofu mixture to get in between.  Smooth the top.

pour tofu mixture

Bake 40-50 minutes, until the liquid has thickened, feels firm and is golden brown on top.  Let it rest for 10 minutes before serving.

bake til firm and golden

While the gratin bakes, prepare Becky’s Famous Roasted Asparagus.  Lay trimmed asparagus in  single layer on a parchment- or silpat-lined baking sheet.  Spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with sea salt.  While the gratin rests, bake the asparagus for 10-15 minutes–until you can smell it and the tips start to brown.

spray, salt and roast asparagus

Serve up wedges of gratin with roasted asparagus on the side.  OMGosh, so, so yummy!  The smooth, gooey, almost cheesy texture and consistency of the gratin is very reminiscent of those eggy, custardy favorites.  The asparagus is a favorite around here, especially in the spring when it can be stalked and harvested in the wild in the fields between Becky’s and my house.  Her method also works with green beans (I added pressed garlic–yum!), and Brussels sprouts.


My son, currently not-vegan, thought the squash version was better than the broccoli version and suggested it would also be yummy for breakfast.  And it was!  He had his with an over-easy egg and cheese on top, Michael and I enjoyed it as is.  (Michael’s with hot sauce, as usual!)


What will be in your gratin/quiche/fritatta/strata?!




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Filed under breakfast, comfort food, dairy-free, dinner, Garden produce, Gluten-free, lunch, Potluck, recipe, Vegetarian

Zucchini Gratin with Goat Cheese

In French, that would be “Tian de courgettes au chevre.”  How Provencal, eh?  My friend Cirrue shared this recipe with me from one of her Provencal cookbooks, along with a couple others coming soon to a blog near you!  Cirrue knew about my zucchini…ahem…problem; that is, I have A LOT of zucchini this year, and shared some uber-gourmet ways to enjoy it. (Thanks, Cirrue!)

I also was able to brush off some of my zucchini abundance on a friend, with a copy of this recipe–something to think about if you, too, have tons and tons of zucchini.  Zucchini is better received with a yummy way to deal with it!  

Oh the cheesy, garlicky wonderfulness of this yummy gratin:

Did I mention this recipe uses up 2(!) medium-large zucchini? If you’re feeding a crowd, I’d double the recipe.  This was enough for dinner for 3 plus a wee bit leftover for my lunch the next day.  I ate it cold from the fridge; it was spectacular cold!  Ready to make some for yourself?  Run to the garden and get a couple zucchini before they get any bigger and some herbs.

  • 2 pounds zucchini, thinly sliced or coarsely grated (2 medium-large zucchini.  If you use a large, Moby-sized zucchini, seed it first.)
  • salt
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or put through a press
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup slivered fresh basil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup (2 oz) fresh goat cheese (I used garlic oil-marinated goat feta.)
  • 2 TBSP fresh or dry bread crumbs (I used Panko.)

Preheat oven to 400F.  Oil a 2 qt gratin pan (or any shallow 2 qt oven-safe pan). 

Place the zucchini in a colander.  Add 1-2 TBSP salt, stir, and let sit for 15-20 minutes over a bowl or in a sink.  The salt will draw some of the water out of the zucchini.

Rinse and gently squeeze out the moisture. 

Heat 1 TBSP oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add the zucchini, salt and pepper to taste.  Cook, stirring, for about 10 minutes.  Add garlic and continue to saute, stirring, for an additional 5 minutes.

Stir in parsley and basil and remove from heat.

Beat together the eggs and goat cheese.

Add zucchini and stir to coat. Adjust seasonings if necessary.

Transfer to the gratin dish.  Sprinkle with bread crumbs and drizzle on the remaining oil.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until the top is browned and the mixture is sizzling.

Let stand a couple of minutes.  Serve hot or room temperature (or cold!).  I thought a slice of toast and some fresh tomatoes would be yummy accompaniments.

I found 6 more zucchini in the garden this morning.  I’m craving some more of this gratin!  Louise, the friend who was kind enough to take a couple zucchini off my hands, added more eggs, used gruyere instead of goat cheese, and turned this recipe into a breakfast frittata!  So, so yummy!

How do you say yummy in French?

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Filed under comfort food, dinner, Garden produce, lunch, recipe, Vegetarian