Recently, a friend of The Recipe Club wanted to take advantage of the summer’s squash abundance. He found this Squash Casserole from Hugh Acheson’s A New Turn in the South to be the perfect solution! Simple, filling and packed with three pounds of squash, this dish can serve as a side, or on its own as a main course.
Recipe for Squash Casserole
From A New Turn in the South by Hugh Acheson
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
3 pounds summer squash sliced lengthwise to 1/4-inch-thick slices on a mandoline or with a knife
2 cups Leek Crema (recipe below)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup freshly made bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Coat an 8 by 10-inch casserole dish with the butter by rubbing it as if you were waxing a car. Arrange the squash in a single layer in the dish. It’s all right if you shingle and overlap edges minimally. We are making a six-layer casserole, so think about that in the next few steps. We need to allocate the ingredients accordingly. Evenly coat the first level of squash with a ladle of crema, a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper, a bit of thyme, a sixth of the bread crumbs, and a sixth of the Parmigiano. Repeat these steps five more times, and then cover the casserole with a fitted lid or foil. Bake for 25 minutes covered and 10 minutes more uncovered, or until the top becomes nice and golden brown. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before serving.
Makes 1 1/2 cups
1 teaspoon unsalted butter
1 leek, white part only, cleaned and minced
Pinch of kosher salt
1 cup heavy cream
In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the leek and 1 tablespoon water. Cover and cook, steaming the leek for about 5 minutes, until very tender. Add the salt and cream and warm through.
Remove the saucepan from the heat, puree the mixture in a blender, and strain through a fine strainer.