In the New York Times, some of the best ideas for preparing food come not from the Dining section but from Health. Martha Rose Schulman writes “Recipes for Health,” a column that highlights an ingredient and, over the course of a week, shows several ways of preparing it in a healthful, typically low calorie manner. I have a considerable repertoire of things to do with beets and beet greens and thanks to Ms. Schulman, I now have another, a gratin, which she published on July 5, 2010. This makes a terrific vegetarian supper served hot and was also good cold the next day for lunch.
What I like about this recipe is that it has a versatile base of ¾ cup low-fat milk, 3 eggs and 2 ounces (1/2 cup) of grated cheese. The vegetables and seasonings are added, and the gratin is baked in a greased dish at 375 degrees for 35-40 minutes. This particular gratin, which was delicious, includes sliced roasted beets (I used 4, 2 red and 2 chioggias, which I steamed), wilted beet greens (mine came from two bunches), 2 garlic cloves minced and sautéed in a little olive oil, and a handful of chopped chives. I might have used scallions instead if I’d had them on hand. This gratin base would be great with zucchini and dill, or spinach and mushrooms, or any number of other combinations.