The ‘Tian’ is actually the Provençal name for earthenware baking dish in which the dish is cooked. Use any Gratin or baking dish. I enjoy the opportunity of foraging in the back of the kitchen cupboards for forgotten baking dishes seldom used. The earthenware dishes previously produced from Temuka Pottery are a favourite of mine for this style of dish. A small roasting dish could be used especially if the dish is finished on a barbecue.
1 trout or salmon (1kg is a good size) filleted and pin-boned, skin on.
2 red onions (360g)
4 courgettes (600g)
1 medium sized eggplant (350g)
6 ripe tomatoes (1kg)
4 cloves of garlic (15g)
Virgin olive oil
Tbsp chopped fresh thyme (a sprinkle of dried mixed herbs is fine)
Salt and pepper grinder to season
- Prepare the vegetables, keeping them in separate containers. Slice the onions, chop the garlic. Slice the eggplant, tomatoes and courgettes into thin slices; season the courgettes and eggplant with salt and ground pepper. Fry the onions and garlic in a little olive until they are softened.
- Spoon the onions into your chosen baking dish then lay the tomatoes, eggplant and courgettes in overlapping slices on top. Feel free to choose any pattern you favour. Sprinkle over a generous portion of olive oil and bake in oven set at 200˚C for around 40-45 minutes, the juices should be evaporated and the dish should visually be well cooked.
- The trout or salmon fillets in the meantime have been seasoned both sides with a good grind of salt and kept covered skin side up. (Salting the skin will make the skin crisp when grilled.)
- Turn your oven onto grill; sprinkle the thyme onto the tian then place on the fillets. Cook around 10 minutes or until the skin is crisp. Serve with a fresh salad and a slice of lemon.
- The Tian of vegetables could be made in advance and reheated.
- The dish could be made using a hooded barbecue.