On Saturday, Walt went to the open-air market in "downtown" Saint-Aignan and bought a pintade — a guinea hen — for our Sunday dinner. Yesterday we roasted it in the oven using the stove's rotisserie feature. As a side dish (or maybe it was the main dish) he made a recipe from Richard Olney's Provence: The Beautiful Cookbook — a Tian de courge, or winter squash gratin. The recipe is below.
A tian is a Provençal gratin dish, and I thought this one was amazingly good. It's made with pureed winter squash — ours was a potimarron that grew in our garden, but butternut or even pumpkin pulp would be good — and with leeks cooked in olive oil, eggs, cream, parmesan cheese, and a grating of nutmeg. The leeks especially, but also the parmesan and nutmeg, add a lot of flavor and make the squash puree really delicious. The topping is grated parmesan and panko (Japanese breadcrumbs).
Walt modified the recipe slightly, because he started by roasting the squash in the oven and then mashing and whipping the squash pulp into a smooth puree, instead of cutting the raw squash into chunks and cooking them down in a pan with the leeks. You can do it either way. We had some julienned and steamed collard greens as a garnish.
The pintade came out really good too. I put sage (we have a plant out back), parsley (growing in pots on the terrace), a dried cayenne pepper, some allspice berries and black peppercorns, a shallot, and two garlic cloves in the cavity. The bird cooked on the spit, turning over a pan of water so that it steamed and roasted at the same time, keeping the meat moist. We ate half of it...