(Almost) Meatless Thursday – composed salad and vegetable tian

I cannot take credit for my vegetable tian that I prepared last night – Ina Garten’s fantastic recipe from her wonderful cookbook, Barefoot in Paris: Easy French Food You Can Make At Home. I did changes to Garten’s original recipe, though – most of the changes were accidental, by the way. Her recipe calls for gruyere cheese and tomatoes, along with the zucchini and potatoes, but I forgot the tomatoes and confused parmesean with gruyere when I was at the store. It turned out great – I made other adjustments, as well. See my recipe, read Garten’s and see which you like better.

Vegetable Tian to serve 2 people (with no leftovers)
1 zucchini, sliced into 1/4″ slices
1 butternut squash, sliced into 1/4″ slices
4 small potatoes, washed and scrubbed, sliced into 1/4″ slices
1/2 large white onion, sliced thinly
1/2 of the whites of a leek, cleaned and sliced
4 gloves of garlic, minced
4 anchovy filets minced
1/2 a roasted red bell pepper, chopped finely
2 sprigs of rosemary
1/2 cup of parmesean cheese

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Saute the garlic, onion, leek, bell pepper and anchovy until the onion is transluscent and wilted – about 8 – 10 minutes. Once they’re done, line the bottom of a Pyrex casserole pan with the onion. Then place the sliced potato, squash and zucchini, alternating, making sure the slices cover all the onion. Grind some pepper  – be careful to use salt because there’s salt in the anchovy. Drop the two twigs of rosemary on top. Cover with foil and bake for about 35 minutes. Remove from oven and remove foil and rosemary and discard. Sprinkle cheese to cover evenly. Put back in the oven and back for a further 25 minutes, until golden brown and the potato is cooked through. Serve warm.

A friendly warning though – this is not a hearty dish – in fact, my mista’ and I were pretty hungry afterwards.

My own version of a Ceasar salad – I’m scared of ecoli, so I don’t eat raw egg, so this is a different take on Caesar salad – well, actually purists will probably say this isn’t a Caesar salad, but semantics…

Your favorite salad greens – I like a mixed herb salad – not only does it have lettuce and arugula, but it also has parsley, dill, cilantro.
3-4 anchovy filets, chopped
1 garlic glove, minced very finely – this is important because you’ll be serving raw garlic
2 tbl of mustard
1 tsp of balsamic vinegar
olive oil
a handful of croutons
1/4 cup of shredded parmesean cheese

Wash your greens and dry them. In a small bowl, drizzle in the oil, drop-by-drop -don’t dump it all in because if you do it’ll separate and never emulsify. You want a custard/mayo consistency. Keep drizzling carefully the oil into the mustard, continuously stirring until you have about 3 tablespoons of dressing. Grind fresh pepper and drizzle in the vinegar. Combine all the ingredients and mix well.



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