Featured Food: Squash
3/4 lb. (about 2 small) zucchini (or other green summer squash), cut into 1/4-inch slices
3/4 lb. (about 2 small) yellow summer squash (or golden zucchini), cut into 1/4-inch slices
5 Tbs. olive oil
1/4 cup fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp. coarse salt
1-1/4 cups freshly dry Monterey jack cheese
2 medium onions (14 oz. total), thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil in a skillet at medium temperature and Add the onions. Sauté, stirring frequently, until soft and golden brown (about twenty minutes). Add the garlic and sauté an additional couple of minutes. Spread the onions and garlic evenly in the bottom of an oiled 2-qt. shallow gratin dish.
Heat the oven to 375°F. In a bowl, toss the zucchini and squash slices with 1-1/2 Tbs. of the olive oil, 2 Tbs. of the thyme, and 1/2 tsp. of the salt. Reserve half of the cheese for the top of the gratin. Sprinkle 1 Tbs. of the thyme over the onions in the gratin. Starting at one end of the baking dish, lay a row of slightly overlapping squash slices across the width of the dish and sprinkle with a little of the cheese. Next, lay a row of zucchini, overlapping the squash, and sprinkle with cheese. Repeat with a row of squash, and then repeat rows, sprinkling each with cheese, until the gratin is full.
Season lightly with pepper and the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt. Drizzle the remaining 1-1/2 Tbs. olive oil over all. Combine the reserved cheese with the remaining 1 Tbs. thyme and sprinkle this over the whole gratin. Cook until well-browned all over and the juices have bubbled for a while and reduced considerably, 65 to 70 minutes. Let cool for at least 15 min. before serving.
Recipe by Rachel Crockett