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Shopping, Gardens, and Butternut Feta Gratin with Sage

Today after work I went over to Mum’s place to pick her up for our Official Winter Clothes Shopping Trip, but before we took off I simply HAD to take some photos of her scrumptious garden. 🙂

Isn’t it pure loveliness? That Mums of mine can grow anything anywhere.

Our shopping trip was a rousing success for two reasons: 1 – I stayed within my budget and 2 – I don’t have ANY purchases I regret. Every last one of them makes me smile. It was one of those years where nearly my entire winter wardrobe was on its last legs and very near death, so it feels wonderful to have a few things restocked so I don’t shiver to bits when things get frosty. I can’t decide what I like best: purple tights, cheery red scarf, or my oh-so-comfy boots. What is your favorite must-have winter attire?

As the weather gets colder I am drawn to comforting, homey dishes that are healthy yet robust enough to keep me warm and satisfied. I found just such a recipe in Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. It is one of my favorite recipe books and I’m not a vegetarian. I just love her creative and highly inventive ideas for making humble veggies shine.

This time I made my own version of her Butternut Squash Gratin with Onions and Sage. Ohhh, my apartment smelled SO good from the sauteed thyme, sage and caramelized onions. Madison used Gruyere or Fontina, but I prefer the tangy sharpness of feta, so I used it instead. She also used milk with flour to bind the gratin, but I chose coconut milk for added richness. Delicious!!

I’m very excited to be a guest blogger at Lazaro Cooks today!! Lazaro is a fantastic cook in his own right, but also collects and features a fabulous array of cooks, recipes, and bloggers from across the country. If you have a moment, please click here to visit his blog and read about my Rainier Cherry Tart with Maple Cream and a Gluten-Free Maple Crust.

I hope you have a beautiful day, dear friends!

Butternut Squash Gratin with Sage, Onions and Feta
(Inspired by Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone)


1/4 cup olive oil
4 cups thinly sliced onions
4-6 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves removed
2-3 Tbsp fresh chopped sage
salt and ground pepper
1 butternut squash, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup whole wheat flour (or gluten-free all purpose)
2 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cup grated Feta
1/4 cup heated warm coconut milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter 2 quart baking dish.
  2. Heat 1/4 cup oil in skillet and saute onion, thyme and sage until onion is lightly caramelized, about 15 mins. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Spread mixture in gratin dish and set aside.
  4. Return skillet to burn and heat remaining olive oil.
  5. Toss squash in flour to coat, discard extra flour. Add squash to hot oil and cook, stirring regularly, until browned on all sides, about 7 minutes.
  6. Add parsley, salt and pepper and cook for 1 more minute.
  7. Layer squash over onion mixture.
  8. Sprinkle with feta and add milk. Cover and bake for 25 minutes.
  9. Uncover, add bread crumbs and bake uncovered until top is browned and liquid absorbed, about 25 minutes.
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Harvesting and Creating with Pineapple Sage » Rambling Tart - […] I’m going to make a few cuttings so I can add a lot more pineapple sage plants to my gardens in […]

bellini valli - I have 2 squash sitting on the counter butternut and spaghetti. So many possibilities.

Ellen - This looks so so good! Yum!! Where in Washington are you? I’m in Bellingham 🙂

RamblingTart - You are so welcome, Denise! It is really great to meet you. 🙂

RamblingTart - I hope you love it, Nancie!! It’s such a nice, comfort food sort of dish. 🙂

RamblingTart - Thank you SO much, Cate!! 🙂 I’m so glad you like them.

RamblingTart - Hi Tanantha!! So delighted to me you – a fellow Washingtonian. 🙂

RamblingTart - Thank you, Patty! It’s so lovely to meet you. 🙂

denise @ quickies on the dinner table - Hi Krista – thank you for your lovely comment on my blog 🙂 I really enjoyed your post at Lazaro Cooks! Your butternut squash gratin holds its own against the lush beauty of your mother’s enviable garden. The addition of coconut milk to the butternut squash is inspired!

Nancie - What a beautiful garden. Squash with sage and feta sounds amazingly good. I’m going to have to give it a try.

Cate - Nom nom nom, this does look good and those pictures oh those pictures are simply gorgeous!

Tanantha @ I Just Love My Apron - Hi Krista, came from Lazaro’s blog. Love the rainier cherry tart! Well, rainier cherry is my favorite and has a perfect sweetness to my taste bud. Anyway, great guest post and hey I’m in WA too! 🙂

Duchess - Sigh… one day I’ll have a garden.

pachecopatty - Beautiful photographs of your garden, thanks for sharing. I love butternut squash and your recipe sounds delicious. Congratulations on your guest post at Lazaro Cooks!

RamblingTart - I’m so glad, Tuula! I think we would have grand fun shopping together. 🙂 Yes!! You did spot lavender. 🙂

RamblingTart - I think so too, Elra! Feta and sage are perfect partners. 🙂

RamblingTart - Thank you so much, Barbara! I just love my Mum’s garden. 🙂 I’m so glad you liked my post at Lazaro’s! He’s such a nice guy. 🙂

Tuula - What a beautiful garden and post…felt like I was right there shopping with you 🙂 Are those lavender flowers I spot? Feel right at home, lol….thanks for this, your photos are always beautiful!

elra - Gorgeous garden in full blooms. I think feta and sage are marry so well together.

Barbara - Your mother’s pansies are gorgeous!
And I loved your guest post at Lazaro’s.

I’m ready for lots of butternut squash recipes…one of my favorites. Super to use sage with it and rather than Parmesan, you used feta! I love it!

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