Recipe from The Café Brenda Cookbook, 25th Anniversary Edition.
Permission to share recipe given by Brenda Langton.
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 tablespoon olive oil
Mix the Parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, and pine nuts together with the olive oil. Set aside.
1 1/2 pounds fresh spinach (approximately 2 cups cooked)
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 shallots, minced
1 small onion, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium zucchini, diced
1/2 cup half and half or soy milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon star anise powder
1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind
fresh cracked pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh herbs: basil, thyme,marjoram, or oregano (or 1/2 tablespoon dried herbs)
1 cup grated cheese: Swiss, Gruyere, or your favorite kind
Wash spinach and pick off stems. Briefly steam the spinach until it is wilted. Set it aside in a colander to drain. Gently squeeze out excess liquid.
Sauté garlic, shallots, and onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-low heat until onion is translucent. Add zucchini, and continue cooking until zucchini is lightly cooked, approximately 3 minutes.
Combine all of the cooked vegetables in a food processor or blender. Add eggs, half and half or soy milk, salt, anise, orange rind, pepper, and herbs. Puree until just smooth.
Pour spinach mixture into a buttered 2 1/2 quart dish or individual gratin dishes and top with bread crumbs.
Bake at 375 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes for quart dish or approximately 20 minutes for individual dishes. Gratin is done when the center is firm to touch.
Serve with lemon wedges. Serves 4.