Heat a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat and pour in:
3 tablespoons olive oil or
11/2 tablespoons olive oil and
11/2 tablespoons butter
When hot, add:
1 onion, sliced thin
Cook until the onion is soft, about 12 minutes, and add:
1 tablespoon marjoram leaves
Fresh-ground black pepper
A pinch of Marash pepper (optional)
Spoon the onion mixture into the bottom of a 5-inch baking or gratin dish.
Peel and slice thin:
1 medium rutabaga (about ½ pound)
2 small parsnips (about ½ pound)
A mandoline slicer makes this job easier. I like to make the slices about 1/8 inch thick. Cook the rutabaga slices first and then the parsnips in salted boiling water until just tender, no more than 2 minutes. Drain and when the slices are cool, layer them into the baking dish, alternating rows of overlapping slices of each vegetable. When all the slices are in, sprinkle with:
A drizzle of olive oil
Cover the gratin with a layer of parchment paper and place in the hot oven. Cook for 15 minutes, remove the paper, and cook for another 10.
• Other vegetables, such as celery root, parsley root, kohlrabi, potatoes, or turnips, may be used along with (or in place of) the rutabagas and parsnips.
• Other herbs and spices can be used instead of marjoram. Try thyme or savory or a mix of ginger, nigella seed, and cilantro. Cardamom is very nice with the sweet flavors of the vegetables.
Reprinted from The Art of Simple Food II. Copyright © 2013 by Alice Waters. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Random House LLC.