Rice and Courgettes Gratin

Courgettes give only 17 calories per 100 g and contain no saturated fats or cholesterol.  These veggies are rich invitamin A, antioxidant vitamin C and their peel is good source of dietary fibre. They are also an excellenyt source of potassium, a heart friendly electrolyte which helps to reduce blood pressure and heart rates by countering effects of sodium. Courgettes are good in B complex groups of vitamins also like thiamin, pyridoxine, riboflavin and minerals, for example, iron, manganese, phosphorus, zinc and potassium.

Ingredients

  • 500g of courgettes
  • 100g of butter
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • ½ litre milk
  • 3 tablespoons of Parmesan or Gruyère
  • 4 tablespoons of b rice
  • Salt, pepper and nutmeg to season
  • A little extra butter for finishing the dish

Method

  1. You need to prepare, grate and cook the courgettes “The best way to do this is simply to wash them, trim off the ends and leave them unpeeled except for any blemished parts. Instead of slicing them, grate them coarsely on a stainless steel grater, then put them straight into a sauté pan or wide frying pan with half the butter.”
  2. Take the remaining amount of butter, the flour and the warmed milk to make a béchamel sauce. You need to season it well, not forgetting to add a little nutmeg. When the sauce is well cooked and smooth, immediately stir in the courgettes.
  3. Then, cook the rice in boiling salted water, keeping it on the firm side. Leave a lightly buttered gratin dish, approximately 8 x 2″, combine the bechamel & courgettes mixture with the rice, put it all into the dish and smooth it down, lightly.
  4. On top of your dish, sprinkle the Parmesan, and a little butter in tiny knobs.
  5. Put the dish preferably near the top of a moderate oven, 170˚C and let it cook for 15 – 20 minutes, or 30 if the whole mixture has been heated up from cold.
  6. Your Gratin is ready when the top is lightly golden and bubbly.
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