225 food writer Maggie Heyn Richardson says she’s not a vegetarian, but makes it a point to go meatless at least one night a week. Especially during the Lenten season, it’s a great way to think outside of seafood dishes or that confining protein-starch-veggie template that lords over the dinner menu. It also guarantees you enjoy new flavor combinations—vegetarian cooking so often relies on fresh herbs and aromatic vegetables to impart that umami punch.
One of Richardson’s favorite veg-centric dishes is a savory vegetable gratin—a layered “veggie bake” that’s also referred to as a “tian.” While it’s packed with healthy fresh vegetables, it has a gooey layer of melted Gruyère on top, and a layer of tender potatoes and onions on the bottom, both of which give it main course heft.
Read on for Richardson’s recipe from our archives. It originally ran on our website in August 2016.