Zucchini, potato and fresh herbs gratin
This dish relies on fresh herbs for its explosion of flavor. The fresh herbs also pack lots of nutrition—they’re a powerhouse of phytochemicals and antioxidants, and a great addition to your healthy diet. Use new potatoes and very fresh zucchini for best results.
• 4-5 zucchini, peeled (if very fresh no need to peel) and cut into ¼ -inch slices
• 8-10 small potatoes, peeled and very thinly sliced (can be done with a mandoline or food processor)
• ½ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
For the sauce:
• 1 cup of mixed fresh herbs—tarragon, parsley, chives, oregano, thyme and basil are good options; be creative, but use more of the mild herbs, and less of the more potent oregano and thyme.
• 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
• 1 clove garlic
• A pinch of hot pepper flakes
• Salt and pepper to taste
• Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
• Prepare the sauce. If you have a food processor, pulse all ingredients to a course grind. Otherwise, chip all dry ingredients as finely as you can, and mix with the olive oil and spices.
• Mix all ingredients, taste the zucchini and correct the seasoning.
• Brush some olive oil on an oven-safe baking or gratin dish, and transfer the zucchini potato mix.
• Transfer to the oven, and bake for 50-60 minutes, until potatoes are well-softened. If the top darkens too much, and the potatoes aren’t yet soft, cover with tin foil and bake some more.
Serve immediately -- will serve 6-10 diners.