I simply love the look of summer squash gratin! Not just the completed dish, but the whole process of making/decorating turns me into an excited little kid. The French were no doubt pretty awesome cooks. The inventors of Baguette, macaroons, Mille-feuille and crepes (my favorite french cuisines :D) have one quality greatest of them all, they eat that crazy amount of cheese and never gains weight! I couldn’t envy anyone more.
The Indian inside me keeps on craving for yum food but the beach lover me is always keeping a close eye on those fatty ingredients. This time I have struck the perfect balance! This colorful and mouth-watering dish which is usually loaded with cheese is now my go to recipe with amazing flavor, loads of fiber, vegetable juice and hardly any cheese. Want to see how? Let’s toss off the cheese (or at least reduce the quantity to bare minimum) and relish the taste of veggies cooked with aromatic spices.
- 1 medium onion – thinly sliced
- 1 yellow squash
- 1 zucchini
- 2 tomatoes
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp zatar (optional, can use Thyme instead)
- 1 can (5.5 oz) of V8 vegetable juice
- 2.5 tbsp Parmesan cheese
- Salt to taste
- Olive oil for saute and coating the bake ware
I know I have a couple of things missing from the picture.. but you got the list 😉
- Heat oil in a skillet and add onion slices. let it cook for 10-15 mins on medium low flame, stirring occasionally
- While onions are cooking, slice both of the squash in circles.
- Add zatar, Parmesan cheese, salt, drizzle some olive oil and mix them all
- Cut and keep tomato slices in a separate bowl
Your onions must have cooked to that beautiful golden brown color by now
- Add a pinch of garlic powder, stir and turn off the stove
- Let it cool for couple of minutes
- Coat your baking dish with some olive oil. Don’t forget the edges
- Pre-heat the over for 350 degrees
- once cool, spread the onions at the bottom of bakeware
- Sprinkle some oregano
- Add half of vegetable juice
- Arrange squash and tomatoes as per your liking. Layering these three different colors brings an unbeatable charm. The quantity of veggies will be enough to add 2/3 layers in your pan
- Add rest of the vegetable juice
- sprinkle 1/2 tbsp Parmesan cheese
- Slide your gratin pan into pre-heated oven
- wait 60-90 mins (depending on oven and your personal preference of nicely cooked or slightly crunchy veggies)
Tada!!!! your gratin is ready to serve! 🙂
- Cooking time can be reduced to 45-50 mins by simmering and concentrating vegetable juice before adding to gratin.
- As you are not peeling squash, Clean veggies thoroughly with produce wash before use
- It can be a perfect dish for pot luck in this summer season
- If you do not have Zatar or Thyme, don’t sweat about it. Oregano alone can work too. Just increase the quantity a little and add while tossing your squash pieces.
Hope you enjoy this recipe. Don’t forget to share your experience and comments with me.
Happy Cooking! 🙂