Fall has come to the Four Corners. Heavy storm clouds, cool temperatures and rain signal that winter – whether we like it or not – is creeping closer.
Grey skies and chilly weather make me want to cook. Almost as soon as I got up this morning, I made an apple pie with walnut streusel topping. And vanilla ice cream (which may sound counterintuitive – I was just talking about the cold, after all – but is an absolute must with apple pie).
I was getting ready to roast some eggplant and summer squash on a cookie sheet when I had a better idea – gratin!
Gratin is essentially a casserole with a browned crust. It’s a simple, hearty preparation for vegetables; in its most familiar incarnation – potatoes au gratin – it’s a sumptuous marriage of starch and fat.
I made my gratin by layering potatoes, zucchini and eggplant, sprinkling the layers with salt and minced garlic and drenching the whole thing in olive oil.
I’m planning to serve it for dinner tonight with white beans cooked with greens and tomatoes. And, of course, apple pie and ice cream for dessert!
Do you have a favorite gratin?