Over the weekend, a cousin of mine was in London on her honeymoon, so of course Mike and I had to crash their honeymoon and spent the whole of Saturday with them. At their request to have an afternoon tea, we ate at Fortnum and Mason’s, where I spotted a “Tian of Langoustin and Devonshire Crab” on the menu. I’m kinda ehh about langoustine, which I find a lot more troublesome than its worth, but I couldn’t shake off this mysterious Tian. When we got home, I immediately googled it, and came across a recipe for Vegetable Tian by Ina Garten. French Tian it is! Plus bacon, of course, just because.
I can never follow a recipe to the letter, so um. . . what I ended up with was probably more of a. . . casserole thing than a Tian, but whatevs. It was still pretty damned amazing.
This is Not a Tian Tian Recipe
– Half a butternut squash, sliced thinly
– 1 onion, sliced
– 2 zucchinis, sliced to about the same thickness of the squash
– 1 can crushed tomatoes
– 250 g cherry tomatoes
– 1 and 1/2 cups ricotta cheese (Mike liked the ricotta, but I found it kinda ehh. Next time I think I’ll try using mozzarella.)
– 1 cup cheddar, grated
– 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
– 275 g Canadian bacon slices, cut into bite-size pieces
– Salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 180 deg C (356 F). Pan-fry the onions until they’re somewhat soft. Layer them on the bottom of your roasting pan. (Yet another reason this isn’t a Tian, because a Tian’s supposed to be cooked in a. . . Tian.) Pour a bit of the crushed tomatoes onto the onions.
2. Pan-fry the squash until they’re somewhat dry-ish, then layer them on top of the onions. Salt and pepper the squash.
3. Layer the bacon on top of the squash, followed by the zucchini. Salt and pepper the zucchini.
4. Cover the zucchini with the cheeses and sprinkle with thyme. Dot the cheese layer with the cherry tomatoes (this helps keep the cheese from burning). Salt and pepper. Slide into oven and roast for 45 min, or until the squash is tender.
Sooo. . . this was really good, but it took quite a while to make. There was SO much slicing and dicing and pre-cooking and assembling involved, I was pooped about halfway through. Mike and I dug in, and he said, “Mmm, yum. So what’s the main dish?” >_<” I was about to argue when I recalled reading that most Tian recipes said, “Serve as appetizer or side dish.”So yea. . . I probably won’t be making this again anytime soon. No side dish is good enough to warrant a 45-min prep time, dammit.