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Crispy breadcrumbs and savory Parmesan top herbed potatoes and green beans

Ligurian Potato, Green Bean and Mushroom Gratin

1 hour 20 minutes 50 minutes active, plus cooling

Ligurian Potato, Green Bean and Mushroom Gratin

Polpettone alla Ligure is the Italian name for this rustic, oven-baked dish. The term polpettone translates as “meatloaf,” but in this case, it refers to a mashup of vegetables baked into a casserole. In classic versions, the potatoes are cooked and pureed before cooked green beans, eggs and Parmesan cheese are mixed in. After baking, the vegetables are set enough to be cut into neat squares. For a more satisfying texture, we keep the potatoes on the chunky side, and for added savoriness, we supplement the beans with cremini mushrooms. Just before slipping the baking dish into the oven, we top the vegetables with a mixture of panko breadcrumbs and Parmesan for toasty crispness. If convenient, the gratin can be assembled, covered and refrigerated for up to six hours before baking, but keep the panko mixture separate. Just before baking, sprinkle with the topping and extend the cooking time by about 15 minutes. With a salad alongside, this dish is a satisfying vegetarian main, or offer it as a side to braises or roasts of almost any type.

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