In this colourful, vitamin-rich dish, rice and leafy Swiss chard are layered with sliced tomatoes and baked in a Gruyère-flavoured custard. The name of the dish – ‘tian’ – comes from the earthenware casserole in which such mixtures of vegetables, rice and eggs are traditionally baked in Provence.
Use spring greens instead of Swiss chard. There is no need to separate the stalks and leaves, and cooking time is 2–3 minutes. * For a courgette and mushroom loaf, melt 25 g (scant 1 oz) butter in a frying pan and cook 350 g (12½ oz) sliced courgettes and 200 g (7 oz) sliced mushrooms with a crushed garlic clove until golden. Add to the cooked rice, together with the eggs, milk, 3 tbsp chopped parsley and 100 g (3½ oz) grated Cheddar cheese. Season to taste. Pour into a greased and bottom-lined 1.2 litre (2 pint) loaf tin and smooth the surface. Bake in a preheated 180ºC (350ºF, gas mark 4) oven for about 1 hour or until just set. Leave to cool for 5 minutes, then run a knife round the sides of the loaf and turn out. Serve with a chunky tomato sauce made by cooking canned chopped tomatoes until thick.
Leafy greens like Swiss chard are a good source of vitamins C, E, K and folate, as well as minerals such as calcium. * Rice is a low-fat starchy carbohydrate, an ideal foodstuff to include in a healthy diet. It is also gluten-free and therefore suitable for those with coeliac disease.
A, B12, C, folate, calcium * niacin, zinc * B1, B2, B6, E, copper, iron, potassium, selenium