herbed-summer-squash-and-potato-torte Recipes

herbed summer squash and potato torte

This poor things isn’t going to be winning any beauty pageants, and especially not in the rushed, omg-it’s-10p.m., why-aren’t-you-ready-yet way I cooked it, but this torte should not be underestimated. It’s some delicious stuff.

summer squash

green onions

Though this is far from the most pitiful offender on the cooking backlog list, I still won’t admit how many weeks ago I made this. However, I do remember that I had a hankering for potatoes that week, and not just any potatoes, but yukon golds. As Alex always says, my cravings come with very specific instructions.

thyme

the "glue" between the layers

But summer doesn’t seem the right time our typical preparation–chunked and roasted until brown with salt, pepper and olive oil–and this torte, cut with yellow summer squash is lighter and perfect, especially served right from the oven with a green or tomato salad.

potato summer squash torte

If you’re like me, you’re probably going to look at the recipe and think, doesn’t that sound a little bland? And “sound” is the choice descriptor there, because this is anything but, and the secret is that it’s perfectly seasoned. There are few better homages to the value of the right level of seasoning–salt and pepper both–than the depth this recipe gets out of relatively simple ingredients.

potato summer squash torte

Herbed Summer Squash and Potato Torte
Adapted from Bon Appetit, June 2001

This torte can easily be made ahead and reheated as you need it for guests. In fact, it’s even better reheated because there is something about potatoes that have been cooked twice–they getting browner at the edges and more tender inside, creating an excellent contrast.

New note, 5/31/12: Just wanted to let you know that I made this the other night with the season’s first summer squash as a single torte in a 10-inch cast iron skillet. I created 4 layers of potatoes and 3 of the squash and it was a bit tall going into the oven, almost overflowing, but it absolutely bakes down into a lovely height. I recommend lightly buttering or oiling your foil if you use this method, so that it doesn’t stick to the top layer of potatoes before they shrink down. It needed about 10 minutes more baking time to get tender. Just like the original, we liked it even more reheated on day two (and three). But I think I will make it this way for now on because it felt simpler and heartier. It’s been a side dish for us for three nights.

Makes 8 servings

1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
12 ounces yellow crookneck squash or regular yellow or green summer squash, cut into 1/8-inch-thick rounds
6 teaspoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 375°F. Butter two 8-inch-diameter cake pans. (Deb note: I had only a 9-inch pan around, so what you see in my pictures is slightly thinner.) Set aside 1/4 cup sliced green onions. Toss remaining green onions, cheese, flour, thyme, salt and pepper in medium bowl to blend.

Layer 1/6 of potatoes in concentric circles in bottom of 1 prepared pan, overlapping slightly. Layer 1/4 of squash in concentric circles atop potatoes. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle with 1/6 of cheese mixture. Repeat with 1/6 of potatoes, then 1/4 of squash and 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle with 1/6 of cheese mixture. Top with 1/6 of potatoes. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon oil. Sprinkle with 1/6 of cheese mixture and press gently to flatten. Repeat procedure with second cake pan and remaining potatoes, squash, oil, and cheese mixture.

Cover pans with foil. Bake until potatoes are almost tender, about 40 minutes. Remove foil; bake uncovered until tortes begin to brown and potatoes are tender, about 25 minutes longer. (Can be made 6 hours ahead. Cool. Cover with foil and chill. Rewarm, covered with foil, in 350°F oven until heated through, about 30 minutes.)

Cut each torte into wedges. Sprinkle wedges with 1/4 cup green onions; serve.

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213 comments on herbed summer squash and potato torte

  1. I was hoping we’d hear about this recipe during your posting flurry this week (which is so fun!). I’ve been daydreaming about it since you uploaded the photos to Flickr. I think it both sounds and looks delicious. I am going to make it just as soon as I get around to ordering a mandoline.

  2. Laziza

    I’ve made this twice in the past week and love it. Just as good cold as it is warm, too, which is nice. I’m looking forward to varying it a little, too, maybe adding a spinach layer or different herbs or peppers, etc.

  3. Jen

    Wow, you weren’t kidding about the frequent posts. There’s been a new one every time I’ve checked back – I love it! This recipe, as always, look delicious, but I really don’t think I can turn our oven on until September.

  4. I don’t know how you always manage to take pictures that make such simple stuff look beautiful and interesting. I love that one of the sliced squash.

    I have a mandoline that I’ve never figured out how to use efficiently. This recipe will give me some great practice.

    I have a major blogging backlog right now too – almost 20 recipes, I think. But I’m saving them for some upcoming busy-ness.

  5. MMMMM, just in time for my free summer squash from the farmer’s market. I think I may use zucchini & yellow squash for added color. I’ve been thinking of trying a different cooking method than steaming, this fits the bill.

  6. Any ideas on slicing the squash if I don’t have a mandoline? Have you ever used the food processor slicing blade?

    This looks delicious, I am going to make it soon.

    Thanks.

  7. Judy

    I printed this recipe and put in my “to cook” binder…now I need to make this. It looks as good in pictures as it did in my head and glad to hear its tasty too.

  8. Jack Etsweiler

    Hey – crack out that knife you’ve been honing to perfection – between the potatoes and the zucchini, you’ll get all the practice you could ever hope for! I love my big old Bron Mandoline, but those knife-things are pretty efficient!

  9. Audrey

    Deb,

    Looks yummy! I’m going to skip the potatoes and use zucchini and yellow squash cuz I’m watching carbs. (what that really means is I’m saving my carbs for all the homemade ice cream). I don’t have a mandoline cuz I’ve been afraid I’d slice off a finger. Can you recommend yours.

    Also, you’ve inspired me to take pictures of what I’m eating these days….just found out that my camera has a macro feature!

  10. Kath – I’ve used the food processor slicing blade with success. I think it would work well for this, although your slices probably won’t be as perfect as those from a mandoline.

  11. deb

    Hey all — A mandoline is not necessary for this recipe, just a very sharp knife. Make a slim bevel down the length of the vegetable–squash or potato–and rest it on that now-flat surface and slice away. This will keep it from moving, and hopefully your fingers intact. A very sharp knife is your best friend in the kitchen and will help you get the thin slices you’ll want. These aren’t paper-thin (for this I would say a mandoline is indeed your best bet, unless you’re a knife skills pro), but 1/8-inch. You can do it!

    I have a piece-oh-junk mandoline I bought for about $25 last year from some brand with packaging only in Japanese letters.

  12. simon

    Maybe it’s because you are such a great photographer, and it didn’t look like that in person, but I think it looks fantastic, and would certainly get my vote if I was a beauty pageant judge.

  13. ack! this sounds and looks worlds better than the summer squash fritters i made last weekend. then again, potatoes and cheese make everything better.

  14. Woo hoo! Just when the squash was about to overtake my refrigerator. I don’t even know why I keep buying it. Something about those sacks of squash for $1 at Union Square always seem to suck me in.

  15. I made this a few nights ago, with a few tweaks. My biggest complaint was that, by the time the potatoes were nice and soft, the squash had turned to complete mush. I think next time I might cut the squash a little thicker than the potatoes to even out the cooking times. (By the way, I laughed out loud when I saw the picture, because you totally beat me to this post. And to my wedding cake post, which won’t be until September, but still.)

  16. Oh my word! I have crookneck squash coming out my ears and a jillion more on the vines. This is definitely on the menu for this week. Can I mail you a few squash? *wink*

  17. This is one of my favorite potato dishes, and somehow feels casserole-y at the same time as summery? I add sour cream to the cheese/herb part, and also caramelize onions. Sometimes it looks like a big old mess but it always tastes amazing. The last time I made it was probably the most successful: in a lasagna pan, layered potatoes, squash, potatoes, then a layer of the cheese/thyme/sour cream, then a layer of caramelized onions, then squash, potatoes, squash, potatoes. Topped with a healthy layer of parm and baked with foil over it. Delicious!

  18. sonia

    Hi Deb,
    I simply LOVE your blog! I read your wedding cake chronicles carefully and must say that your work was admirable. I have a question about the swiss merangue buttercream – The ingredient quantities for a 9 inch round cake are for a 3-layered?

    Thanks.

  19. i

    I just made this this weekend! It’s delicious. I didn’t use a mandoline either but I wish I had let mine brown like yours did… Your pictures look great.

  20. Looks delicious! I always need to cook my squash in a creative way to convince myself I like it. Which I do…most of the time… Can’t wait to try it!

  21. SAS

    I love the idea of this recipe. I agree with (Sarah #30 comment above). I always have to use my creative ideas to make it through yellow squash and zucchini …. this sounds divine in itself. My CSA has had yellow squash this last week.

  22. I am invited to a Pampered Chef party on Thursday night, and although I love all things kitchen, am not a big fan of PC and PC parties. However… the only thing that might make it bearable would be the thought of acquiring my very own mandolin. And this recipe has just put me over the edge. Guess I’m off to ooo and ahhh over a bunch of kitchen crap that I don’t need. And to get that mandolin once and for all.

  23. I tried this tonight and it was delicious. The grocery store was out of Yukon Gold potatoes (darn!), so I used red potatoes instead. I also forgot the fresh thyme and used dried. It still worked – proof of the recipe’s adaptability.

  24. Stephen

    Mandoline: I’ve got a red plastic Kyocera mandoline, with a ceramic blade, that was around $20. It works wonderfully. Comes with a food holder – a knob, basically, with pointy things underneath that get jabbed into whatever you’re running through the mandoline. Here it is (scroll down to the red, adjustable model).

  25. Susan

    I keep seeing and hearing about Yukon Gold potatos, but I’ve haven’t tried them yet. No reason..I just haven’t. I will now. This looks good. Do you think I could use shallots instead? I’m just not crazy about the way green onions cook-up. I only like the tops..used fresh.

  26. o.k., this just might be the recipe to get my husband to eat squash! I am going to go for it this weekend! Maybe with a glass of champagne since it will be his B’Day!Thanks for sharing.

  27. Oooh, so your mandoline isn’t a pricey one? That’s a relief, I’ll have to get one of those. My kitchen skills with the knife aren’t as good as I’d like them to be. I wish I had a steady hand.

  28. deb

    Radish — Not at all. I got it at Bowery Kitchen Supply. It is white and plastic (you can see part of it in this photo) and I’ve gotten more than a year of use out of it already, so it has more than paid for itself. That said, I’m not opposed to upgrading a bit next time, but I have a rule about not paying a lot for something until I am sure the less-expensive version of it doesn’t cut it. (No pun intended!)

    By the way, a friend of mine just bought this one from Sur la Table, on sale. It comes in a case that looks like it could hold a violin. She promises to have a dinner party soon which will be nothing but finely sliced food. I can report back after!

  29. I think potatoes and cheese are two of my favorite food groups…and I’m stoked to have new uses for all the summer squash I’m getting this year from my CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).Anything to mix up that my usual throw-it-in-a- pan-and-sautee-it-with-something method…

  30. maytal

    Deb, Can I just leave out the cheese? I want to serve a variation of this at friday night dinner which is going to be a meat only affair. Have any suggestions of anything i can add instead of the cheese?

  31. seelife3d

    Bought everything to make this recipe tonight. Decided to add spinach to it, as well as a clove or two of garlic…….bought some fresh salmon that I will grill up and serve along with it.
    Great recipe!!!

  32. @tigermilk: I have this in the oven at this very moment; it smells glorious and I can’t wait! I’m serving it as a side with grilled bratwurst – we have brats for dinner three or four times a month, and I’d been getting very bored with variations on potato-salad-and-a-veg, so this was a godsend.

    My adjustments were of the what’s-on-hand variety: basil instead of thyme, and a handful of small chunks of leftover cheese – about half parm, but also oddbits of white and yellow cheddar and Havarti.

  33. Jessi

    I made this tonight using a Vidalia onion instead of green and grated Romano instead of Parmesan, and by baking it in a 12″ cast iron skillet (kept the same amounts and, marvelously, the same cooking times!) It was SOOOO yummy. My roommates could smell it cooking and devoured it as soon as it was out of the oven. Next time I am going to try zucchini and spinach and maybe a little grated Swiss in with the hard cheese.

  34. Scott

    Sounds like a delicious recipe!
    Takes a while to filter out all the pretentiousness but is definitely worth the effort.

    Thanks,

    Scott

  35. OK my inner yum-meter just shot from the chocolate biscotti to this torte. Gah! I think I’ll have to start a to-cook binder too… and the bevel trick for slicing is a great idea.

  36. I made this the other night and it was completely delicious, so far bland. :) I’m reheating now for lunch and hope, as you suspect, it’ll just be that much better. Thanks for the recipe!

  37. Nancy

    Do you have to add the flour? What does it add to the dish?

    This looks delicious. I only recently discovered this site and am already impressed!

  38. LizD

    I found your blog while search for something new to do with my tremendous-volume-of-veggies problem (we are in a CSA and get a giant box of produce every week). I normally don’t like yellow squash, but we have some anyway (because you just get what they give you) and this recipe actually sounded so good. And I mean this was moan-at-the-dinner-table-and-make-hubby-laugh kind of good.
    I LOVE your blog. I am now firmly hooked and have RSSed you and am looking ever so forward to reading all your old, and new, posts. Thanks SO much for the humor, the recipes, the tips, and pictures. This is great reading!!

  39. Megan

    Made this yesterday with a layer of zucchini in it. Was very good, and it got some veggies in my husband, which is not easy. Thanks for the recipe!!

  40. Mollie

    SO happy you posted this. I have crooknecks coming out my ears (a sight to see for sure!). I saw something like this on iron chef of all places the other day and wanted to give it a shot, and then saw this which gave me some additional guidelines. Can’t wait to try it – I’m going to give it a shot in cast iron in the grill this weekend.

  41. Theresa

    I only had red potatoes, but I made this last night and it was delish! Was super easy and will definitely be a new staple. Thanks!

  42. I’ve been a reader for awhile now, but must de-lurk to tell you this is one of my favorite summer dishes and has a place in my ‘standards’ binder. In fact, I just made it tonight since the farmer’s market (finally) had yellow squash. I use a food processor to cut the veggies, and don’t use the 8 inch pans, I just layer it in a big casserole and cook it for a bit longer. Glad you posted this one! It’s a keeper.

  43. sonia

    this looks delicious- i’m making this for dinner!
    on a side note- did i see another sonia in the comments somewhere?
    if so- hi!

  44. Beth

    I made this dish, and holy cow: people, you must! A Godly recipe. Hie thee to the produce section. My son decided he has a newfound appreciation for summer squash now; he and my husband get it again tonight. (one 8″ pan served 3 of us x 2 pans). I served this with fresh corn on the cob and grilled salmon. Must mention: because we normally prefer/require reduced sodium diets (SO much better for you), I will certainly reduce the quantity of salt in this dish – by at least half – for next time. Parmesan also contains salt. Really a wonderful dish in every respect, but we are salt sensitive. Yep, a real keeper! You outdid yourself, Deb! My dish looked, and smelled :) like your photo – wonderful stuff. Tasted like more! Need to make it for my other sons, and extended family, and send it to foodie friends. Even my dog wanted some. I had to inform him: dogs don’t do squash. He stared at me in frank disagreement. We’ll continue the carnivore discussion tonight (when pan #2 will be reheated). The dog’s stares will be a problem, I can tell you.

  45. maytal

    OK help! I know I’m a complete dork when it comes to cooking but mine came out mushy inside, perfectly crispy on top, but inside icky mush. Could it have been the type of potatoes and squash I used? too much oil? I used a different potato (can’t remember the name right now) and some green type of squash, they both came out mushy. I plan to try again till I get it right. suggestions? ideas?

  46. Beth

    Response to Maytal:

    Deb’s recipe said to use crookneck, or yellow summer squash – which is what I used. I used Yukon Gold potatoes also. Since yousaid that you used green squash (?) maybe that was the problem w/ “mush.” Not sure. Also: The olive oil is to be drizzled on each layer…one tsp. per layer for 3 layers. This is times the two pans as mentioned in the recipe. Six tsp. total for two pans. Also: I dotted the tops of the ingredients in the pans with a very small amount of unsalted butter; worked great for me. Perhaps you could try again. It was a very tasty recipe, but I just need to use a lot less salt for us here. Beth.

  47. Made this this evening and it is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!! 3 out of our 4 family members aged 4-38 loved it! I made it in a cast iron skillet and the bottom potatoes crisped and browned and all the flavors are fantastic! Thank you for sharing!!!!

  48. Amy

    Made this the other night and loved it. Lots of times I don’t have success with recipes, even ones that other people have raved about (arroz con pollo comes to mind), so I was really glad this one worked out. I used basil instead of thyme (it’s what I had on hand) and reduced the salt by about half. Oh, and used red skinned potatos. Thanks for a great recipe!

  49. I made a half recipe of this for my husband and I for dinner recently, and we both really liked it. I used dried thyme, which seemed to work fine. I used yellow summer squash, and my only complaint was that it was a little too watery. I think next time I’ll reverse the covered and uncovered baking times (so 25 minutes covered, then 40 minutes uncovered). The flavor was right-on though, and it was a pretty easy meal to make.

  50. Melissa

    I loved this dish when we made it. In fact, my dh and I ate all of it in one night, and nothing else…which is very unusual for my carnivorous dh. A vegetarian meal? Him? You guess it, yup, this time it was. And it was *good*! Thanks for sharing this recipe with us!

  51. gwen

    I made this for dinner last week and absolutely loved it… I halved the recipe because I didn’t have enough potatoes — and thought two pies would be too much for just me and my boyfriend — and then regretted it when there were no leftovers! Thanks very much.

  52. I had to rush over to the computer after eating this and let you know how good this is! Even though I decided to turn the oven on, on this very hot day, it was worth it. The nice thing about the dish (even though oven-baked), is that it is very light and summer-like. I was shaking my head while I was eating it… Thank you! By the way, for leftovers, would you suggest removing from the pan and storing or storing the torte in the original pan and then reheating that as is next day? I don’t want it to lose it’s nice shape.

  53. brunetterecluse

    My first time commenting! I saw this yesterday and knew what I was going to do with all the squash my cousin gave me from her garden. I made this tonight and it is so yummy. I love the site, thanks so much for inspiring to shake off the weekday doldrums and cook more.

  54. Jennifer in NYC

    I made this tonight and it is tasty! The summer flavors of fresh time, scallions and squash really come through. Thanks for the great recipe.

  55. Beth

    Just a quick comment.. Should you decide to halve the recipe, be sure to halve the entire recipe! I just somehow decided I could use half the potatoes and squash, but the full amount of flour/cheese mixture. yuk yuk yuk! I KNEW something didn’t look right. :-)

  56. Just wanted to let you know that I made this for dinner last night and holy summer squash was it spectacular. I made it in a pie plate (didn’t have a cake pan!) and halved the recipe and two of us at the entire thing. QUICKLY.

    I didn’t have any thyme or green onions, so I dropped those, but I did have a leek, which I chopped thinly and scattered over the parmesean in each layer. Amazing!

    What a wonderful, easy recipe. This is definitely going into my regular rotation.

  57. Kitty

    I am making this right now and I can’t wait! Thanks so much, I just found your blog and am sad that I have apparently missed many years of deliciousness. Will be a regular from now on.

  58. Maddy

    so good! I added chopped fresh rosemary and used little yellow, red, and purple potatoes and it turned out fantastically. Also, it’s amazing with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.

  59. How funny that I’m the second commenter from Japan! Made this for dinner with rosemary instead of thyme, since my thyme plant is dying. Turned out delicious and perfectly browned on the bottom. Amazing!

  60. dior

    I found this recipe this afternoon when trying to decide what to make with the yellow summer squash & red potatoes from our veg box for dinner – how perfect! It was delish, and I’m certain it will be even better as leftovers…Thank you SK!

  61. hi deb! I knew that when I felt like making a new potato dish this weekend your blog would come through for me! This dish is amazing & simple. I’m pretty sure it’ll become a regular in our house. thanks so much for posting it.

  62. Emily

    Just to make sure my torte will really be perfectly seasoned, did you use regular or kosher salt? It looks delicious, by the way.

  63. Graciela

    Yeah this was really good. I made it last night but then I didn’t have enough squash for two so I used broccoli for the other torte and that was actually pretty good too. I also didn’t have parmesan so a mexican blend worked fine. Thanks!

  64. Kim

    I made this last night in a 9×13, with slightly less potatoes (just what I had). I didn’t have enough cheese but it was still very tasty. Thanks for a unique dinner idea. Between my boyfriend and I, we ate the whole dish. I really like the crunchy raw green onion garnish. I’m depending on your site for all these simple veggie dishes since I just signed up for a 4-week trial of my local CSA. It starts this Wednesday!

  65. Rhonda

    I made this today after seeing it on your sidebar as a reminder that this is good esp with just picked squash. I love this one and have made it several times. Thank you.

  66. Deb, I cannot believe how easy and delicious this recipe is! It was in the oven in under 20 mins with help from my mandoline, washing prep dishes was super easy, and it was SOO good!

  67. Aiminee

    No mandoline here but it was quick and easy to make and the leftovers are amazing for lunch. I always run out of ideas for all the summer squash I end up with… Thanks for all the veggie recipes and ideas. I’ve got you bookmarked.

  68. Eileen

    Love the new seasonal recipes sidebar!! This recipe fit my cravings and start of motherload squash season. I added fresh sugar snap peas which were awesome roasted!! Thanks so much for the inspiration and guidance–as usual :)

  69. so simple but delicious! i had alot of extra squash this week and wanted to make something new. i made this for dinner for my boyfriend & i last night. we loved it!

  70. Thank so much for the seasonal postings sidebar. I am not a big zucchini and squash person, though they are growing on me a little. But I get them every week pretty much from my CSA so I am always looking for recipes like this one!! Thanks I am definitely making this tomorrow night:)

  71. ProudCanadian

    i, too, can be very set in my ways… especially when it comes to the potato… Yukon Gold is really the only spud for me, no matter what i’m making which is a bit of a pitfall- but i don’t care! at our house, i’m cooking, you eat & make yummy noises- not critique or make suggestions!!! :)

  72. I just discovered your blog and i love it! What wonderful recipes. I tried this one last weekend. It looked nothing like yours but it was really good! I had no green onions so I caramelized a few onions first and added those. I also made it a lot thicker and cooked it a lot longer and we ate it cold with a salad ;-)
    I confess I have a hard time following recipes!
    Thank you!

  73. This looks great. I can’t wait to try it and agree with another poster that zucchini would be a nice add. Re: mandolines–I bought an expensive French-made mandoline but never used it and got rid of it, then needed one and got the Oxo model, which I like very much. Be super careful and ALWAYS use the hand guard. I’ve read that the cheaper ceramic and Japanese ones should be avoided as they break and slip and are dangerous. Like most things, the higher quality kitchen equipment is almost always worth the investment.

  74. Debra

    I made this and it did not quite live up to my expectations. I’m thinking perhaps it might bake more evenly if some chicken broth were added before baking.

  75. Kiki Cheng

    Today I realized how long it’s been since I’ve really cooked anything, and decided quickly without deliberation that this looked really good. So I made it. It is DELICIOUS! My flat mate loved it too.

  76. Rupi D.

    Thanks so much for this recipe! I made it last night and we loved it:) I followed the recipe mostly, the only thing I changed was i used White Cheddar instead of the parm and added Panko crumbs to the final cheese layer on top after uncovering it to bake longer- giving it a nice crust on top. Thanks again!

  77. Made this last night for dinner – mine wasn’t nearly as pretty! I know you say it’s not going to win in the looks department…but mine just sort of came out in wedges but then fell apart. Either way it was delicious!

    I didn’t have any green onions so I subbed some diced yellow onion instead & left out the “garnish”. My husband was wary of this dish while I was layering yellow (squash) on yellow (potatoes) but he named it a success!

    Now if only I can get it to come out a little *tighter* :-/ Will be eating leftovers tonight and trying it all again soon… THANK YOU DEB!

  78. innes

    i made this recipe with my “classroom” of infants today at our childcare center! they enjoyed smelling and tasting the ingredients, and the squash came from our own garden plot. the layering was somewhat haphazard, as you might imagine from helpers age 6 to 18 months, but the result was spectacular. we altered the recipe so it was vegan and gluten-free. thanks for the recipe!

  79. Erin

    I tried this last night and mine turned out incredibly salty. I was sad because I can see that this might become a favorite to make. I double checked my measurments and didn’t add extra salt-do you think it was the cheese?

  80. Charlotte

    Thanks for the recipe – I’ve been looking for one with potatoes and summer squash and here it is! That’s what’s for dinner tonight!

  81. tanya

    Thank you for the recipe! I made it last night for myself, my husband, and my sister-in-law. I used a 9” pie pan, which had the capacity to hold 3 layers of potatoes and two layers of squash, and I used up all of the cheese mix that the recipe calls for. I used very young green squash. To serve, I sprinkled the top with scallions and cherry tomatoes cut in half. As my sister-in-law said, it looked like a picture in a cooking magazine. You are right about the seasoning, Deb. It is absolutely perfect. The dish has a wonderful, fresh, summery taste, complex but not overpowering.

    I followed the advice of other commentators here and used less salt than specified in the recipe. The cheese has a strong salty taste. Some complained that their dish was watery. I did not encounter this problem. The squash was very tender, but held its shape and did not turn into water.

    To complete the dinner, I made a four bean salad from Trader Joe’s recipe.

    Oh, and the three of us ate the whole thing; there is only one small piece left. So I’d say, if you make it in a 9” pan, and it is your main course, it serves 4 people, just barely. It definitely needs a hearty salad to make a complete dinner.

    Thank you for yet another excellent recipe. This one is a keeper.

  82. Mary

    Um – YUM! I have a garden laden with yellow squash right now and a whole cabinet full of potatoes that I bought for another purpose and never used – match made in heaven! I altered the recipe in that I 1.) used red potatoes, 2.) used fresh basil instead of thyme since I have it in spades, 3.) threw in a chopped up italian sausage that was left over from last night. It definitely is NOT a glamorous looking dish, but it has unbeliveable flavor. I also took Deb’s suggestion and made it in a cast iron pan (just 2 layers).

    Thanks for another winner!

    Mary

  83. Marcia

    Similar to a yummy ‘summer bake’ with tomatoes, squash,potatoes and lots of garlic. can’t wait to get the Yukon’s to try this. thanks

  84. misswendy

    we absolutely love this, i’ve made it 3 times since the day i first read it (last month). used oregano (not a fan of thyme) and along with the squash added some zuchini… i never know how to spell that.
    thanks!

  85. Andrea

    I have a plethra of squash in my garden so I was searching the web for recipes that included squash…which was how I found your blog. I made these tonight for dinner but I don’t have a 8 or 9 inch round springform pan so I decided to make mini tortes in my muffin pan instead (Note to self – I could have used a cake pan!). I used my little squash so I could still overlap them with smaller potatoes. This was AWESOME! I had company for dinner and they all raved about it. It made it worth cooking in 90 degree weather.
    I am so excited to try some of your other recipes. I also made the grilled pizza tonight and loved it. Next on the list is lobster rolls for my husband’s 30th bday…and I am excited to make the mini rolls too! Hard to find a good recipe for rolls.

  86. Su

    I love the taste of fresh veggies baked in spices so the recipe was right up my alley! But my problem is that the torte came out similar to my potato gratin and the layers don’t “stick”. Cutting it into slices always resulted in separated layers. More flour or Parmesan? Or is there something else I can do?

    Thank you for the lovely pictures though, mouthwatering as usual!

  87. sjm

    Just recently discovered your site – now my go to am read, Thank you! This dish is AMAZING, turning squeemish squash eaters into willing tasters, for sure.

  88. I made this the other night and we loved it! It reminds me of a healthy version of my mom’s “scalloped potatoes” (sliced potatoes baked in a bath of cream sauce…is that what they are to everyone?). Then, we were happy to find that it was EVEN BETTER FOR BREAKFAST.

  89. Liz

    Deb–

    This was my first attempt at a SmittenKitchen recipe, and what a success! Your directions were clear and concise, and the finished product surpassed expectation. I’ve now given the recipe (and the name of your website!) to three of my girlfriends and my mom. You were right on the money with the twice baked comment, the torte was even better the next day for lunch.

    I can’t tell you how excited I am to try many other recipes from your site, thanks Deb! You’re a kitchen inspiration to this SF gal.

  90. Lauren

    I know it’s been quite some time since this recipe was posted, but I had a snafu when I last made this – it was terrible! I followed the recipe verbatim and perhaps that was the problem – the potatoes and squash were entirely unseasoned, and it only tasted delicious when I got to the herbed cheese. Did you salt and pepper your vegetables, or add other spices to them before layering them?

    I have some summer squash in the fridge crying to be used in this recipe! Any and all advice is welcome!

  91. Lori

    I made this last weekend as well. I added carmelized onions to the cheese mixture (also grated some aged provolone and asiago in with the parm). Cooked it ahead of time, then re-heated the next day for friends. It was awesome! Both pans got gobbled up. I am going to try with spinach and portabella mushrooms.

  92. Hi Deb! Do you happen to know a good side dish I can use to go along with this torte? All the ideas I come up with end up being well, blah. Thanks so much!

  93. Laura

    I was wondering what might be a suitable alternative to the squash? The stores here in NE England aren’t to hot on the squash front. The best we can do is usually butternut or gem squash. Any ideas if they would be a suitable substitute?

  94. Wench

    For the first time in I can’t remember how long, I exactly followed a non-baking recipe. Oh, oh my maude, this is so. good.. It’s prime squash season at the farmer’s markets right now. I might have to make this on a weekly basis.

    I’m also thinking potatoes and carrots, maybe a bit of spinach, for the winter. MMMMMM.

  95. Cari Messina

    I made this last night and the aroma that filled every corner of my home was absolutely intoxicating, only rivaled by the taste of of this wonderfully simple torte once it was finished. I cut the recipe in half and made it in an 8-in pie pan, used most of the cheese mixture within and only sprinkled some on top, and seasoned each layer lightly with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper (amazing what thorough seasoning will do for a dish, as Deb mentioned above).

    It formed a delightfully brown and crispy top on it, very pretty! I noticed a previous comment about the squash getting mushy, which happened, but I thought of it as more ‘melt in your mouth’; I felt it definitely kept it’s integrity, as I could still see the gorgeous little half moons of pale yellow skin while I munched.

    Make it, people. You won’t be sorry!

  96. This is a family favorite of ours and I just wanted to let you know that I made a baby version for my almost 11 month old and he ate it right up! Peeled yukon golds, cubed yellow squash and dried thyme steamed in the Beaba and pureed with shredded fresh parm. It is baby approved! :)

  97. Mali

    I came across this website while trying to figure out what to do with the fridge full of squash that i need to get rid of. I was tired of making zucchini bread and biscuits. Tried your recipe, my family won’t stop raving.Thanks…..

  98. Caitlin

    I have made this once before, and am dying to make it again tomorrow for girls’ night. However, I’m one round cake pan down and was wondering if you think that I could make this all in one larger dish. This dish really is flavored perfectly!

  99. Christine

    This was SOOO GOOOD…I didn’t think it would taste that good (yeah..well, sorry). I was in a hurry, had all the “stuff” in the house, am into a cook-with-what-you-have-jag, so this was perfect. I was so much in a hurry…left the skins on the RED potatoes, forgot the thyme (!!! there were only 4 things I had to remember to put together and I forgot one of them!! sheeshhh), added onion powder (ick but no green onions in house), left out salt (cheese is salty enough for us) cut and arranged all and cooked it forever (it seemed…remember..in a rush). Had it with Tarragon Chicken Salad sandwiches on sprouted grain bread…and a beer?

    Hubby said so good. I’m glad there are leftovers….BREAKFAST

  100. I made this for supper last night and I’m in LOVE! I planned to serve it with a green salad, but it was late and I didn’t want to wash a bunch of greens. So I ended up topping it with a poached egg and it was perfect. Leftovers came to work with me today and I can’t wait to see how the day-after flavors have developed. Another keeper, Deb. Thank you!

  101. fs

    this is so good! I was lazy and sliced everything a bit thicker than 1/8th (more like a 1/4) and cooked it at 400. Turned out great, and served with chili/curry greek yogurt and salad. Yum! Green onion is key.

  102. This is the perfect recipe for yesterday’s CSA haul!

    On question though–a number of people mention adding spinach. And I am curious…how? Would you blanch the spinach first? Or just add the fresh leaves as an additional layer?? I want to do this and I have the fresh spinach, I’m just kind of new to this…

    Thanks in advance!

  103. Danita

    Found this recipe while searching for something different to do with yellow squash. I used red potatoes as that is what I had on hand. Turned out wonderful. I’ll definitely make this again. Looking forward to the cookbook.

  104. Kate

    WOW! I too was trying to use up some summer squash from the CSA box, and this recipe is amazing. Golden, crunchy, cheesy deliciousness. I made two modifications due to my kitchen supplies – I cooked the whole thing in a large cast iron skillet (turned out beautifully, took about the same amount of time) and used shallots because I was out of green onions. Delightful.

  105. Sarah

    Hi Deb! I was just introduced to your site recently, have tried 6 or 7 of your recipes, and have loved every one. I love all your helpful instructions and beautiful pictures.

    This recipe was absolutely delicious but I was wondering if you had any suggestions as to a meat that might be good layered in with the squash and potatoes? I love vegetarian dishes but boyfriend seems to think he needs meat with every meal.;)
    Thanks!!!

  106. Kaylan

    WOW. I just made this and it is sooo good! I substituted the parmesan cheese with gruyere and used rosemary instead of thyme because that’s what I had fresh – it turned out great!

  107. Ingrid

    Made this last night – delish! Had leftovers today – what a great way to utilize all that squash the garden give you!

  108. Marna

    Has anyone tried freezing this? I’m looking for stuff to use up squash that I can freeze, not just freeze the squash itself.

  109. What a great use of everything that’s growing right now. I was looking for a recipe to use some of my CSA haul and this is it! All the veggies in the recipe came in this week’s haul, and my thyme looks the best it has all summer.

    Oh, and most importantly, it was delicious too. A great mix of light summery flavors and fall comfort food. This one’s going in my recipe binder.

  110. I saw this recipe and knew it was going to be awesome. I modified it a little bit, and added crumbled bacon, and used a teeny bit of the bacon grease in substitution of the oil. It was AMAZING! Also, used mozzarella and cheddar cheese.

  111. Melissa

    Yum! How have I not seen this before? Going to keep an eye out for squash. It’s been cool and rainy in Toronto and I am plotting all the things I can make in the oven this week before it gets hot out again.

    Speaking of which, Deb, I think there’s a typo in your newly added note. You mention making it with the season’s first summer “square” – guessing that should read “squash”. If you can find square squash though, you should post a photo. :)

  112. Jennifer L.

    I’m so glad you mentioned this again in the comments of a more recent post! I made it the other night, and it was DELICIOUS! You were also correct about the taste just getting better on the second and third day. Can’t wait to have it for lunch today!

  113. Julie R.

    Just made this torte for Father’s Day. Fantastic! The recipe was very easy to follow and my husband, who does not necessarily love squash, raved over this dish. Despite the fact that no butter was used, this torte tasted amazingly buttery and soft with a really nice crispness on the top. Every bite was so well-seasoned and delicious. So incredibly easy, too. Will definitely make this again.

  114. Chris

    Just made this tonight and it was awesome. I used a 9-inch springform pan and did the whole thing in one go-three squash layers and four potato layers. Once cooked and cooled down from nuclear, I just opened the ring, slid it off the base, and cut it into the nice wedges. Super tasty!

  115. Lee

    Oh my gosh. You are a lifesaver! I am growing squash (and cooking it for the first time) and this recipe looks right up our alley. I’m growing sage, too! Pardon my happy squeal. =)

  116. Sherry

    Great recipe. I made it first 2 weeks ago and it was wonderful. I made it again last night with this change: I added a layer of finely sliced and sautéed sweet onion after the squash layer. I also added about 2 or 3 tablespoons of Gorgonzola cheese that I had left over because I was a bit short on the parmasen and I wanted it to have a good kick. Lastly I used rosemary instead of thyme. It came out wonderful. I used a large decorative tart/pie pan and did not have as many layers, but it still worked very well. As you and others have said, it is even better the next day! Thanks!

  117. Jennifer

    This is delicious and definitely one we make a lot during the summer now! The only change we’ve made is to use smoked Gouda instead of the Parmesan. Mainly because we never have parm, but always have Gouda.
    I can’t wait to try making it in my little cast-iron

  118. Britt

    Just made this last night, with the following on-hand substitutions: cheddar instead of parm, 1 tsp regular + 1/2 tsp garlic salt, fresh sage instead of thyme, and 12″ cast iron pan. B/c of the size of the pan, I only did 2 full layers, plus a little extra on top, but it was fabulous! I also poured 9 whisked eggs over the top just before I stuck it in the oven, for some extra protein… both the husband & I *could not* get enough!
    This was my first Smitten Kitchen recipe adventure, and I can’t wait to make more – thank you so much for your beautiful, inspiring site!

  119. Shuggies mom

    I’m going to make this now but ‘m going to add some thinly sliced onion, and I think I will saute them first so they’re tender. I love to saute yellow squash with onion, so I think this will be good!

  120. Ann

    Trying this tonight – 2 pans in the oven now. I’ve been trying to sneak in all the squash into side dishes that I can – the boys in the house are NOT fans of squash. Nothing like mixing them with potatoes and cheese, woohooo! Made the bacon corn hash to rave reviews earlier in the week. You & your website are my secret weapon in the kitchen these days. Thanks for the great recipes!

  121. Dana

    OMG, all I can say is that this recipe is amazing. I have been making this nearly every week since zucchini showed up at the farmer’s market (hey, when I find a good thing, I stick with it). We eat it as a main course and my 1 year old loves it too!

  122. Erica

    Just made this a few nights ago–used a few less green onions b/c I’ve got “onion-phobic” husband AND son. It was so tasty–the seasonings cook into the potatoes and squash so well, and every bite is flavorful. Thanks!

  123. Michele

    This was Amazing!!
    My hubby had a great twist that we’re going to try tonight – same idea but with potatoes, broccoli, bacon pieces and cheddar cheese = like a baked potato

  124. Liz

    Incredible! I have had doubts about yellow summer squash since I was a child (when the only way I ever had it prepared was in a microwave. ick.), but you have converted me. I have an incredible influx of squash right now and decided to give this recipe a go. I had an excuse to finally use the mandoline lurking in the cupboards and went with the one-pan, stuff it to the top method. My boyfriend tried it and requested it for dinner every night that week. It was also particularly delicious to take to work for lunch.

  125. Brandi

    I made this in the skillet like you suggested in your update, and it was superb! I just kept layering it until it was overflowing, and it cooked down beautifully. I only had whole wheat flour, but it worked just fine. Thanks for a fine dinner!

  126. Dena

    I made this last night. My husband LOVES potatoes, and I’m always looking for ways to cook them more healthfully. We both commented that this dish reminded us of an “au gratin” side, without leaving you with the “heavy” feeling of all that cream and cheese. It was delicious, and I’ll be making it again. I served it with plain, herb-seasoned ground turkey burgers. I can’t wait to try reheating and see how it turns out.
    Side note: our neighbors smelled the dinner cooking, and told us later that they wanted to wait until we left for the night and run over and eat our leftovers! :) Thanks SK!

  127. I made this for the umpteenth time over the weekend, with a few adjustments for season and party size. Both changes worked beautifully. I omitted the squash because it’s not in seaon. And since it was a larger party I assembled the whole thing in a half sheet pan, cut it into 2×3″ rectangles, chilled overnight and reheated on a cookie sheet before serving. It was a hit!

  128. Erin

    Do you think this could work with squash I’d sliced and frozen from my garden? If so, how would you suggest cooking it so the potatoes get cooked through and the squash not overcooked? It looks amazing, but I’ve promised myself we’re eating up things from the freezer first. :) Thanks!

  129. Katie

    I made this for the first time this week – incredibly delicious! I wanted a bit thicker torte, so I just used one spring form pan (was surprised how much it shrinks down!) and it worked perfectly, although I took Deb’s suggestion and cooked it a bit longer. The only change I might suggest is that I’m a bit salt sensitive, so I might have omitted some of the salt, but other than that it was great!

  130. BJ

    Does anyone know if this can be made and frozen? I have abundance of squash now, but know I will want some this winter. Thanks

    1. deb

      BJ — Theoretically, yes. But summer squash is not my favorite to freeze because it gets mushier once defrosted. You might want to recrisp it a bit in the oven if you do freeze it.

  131. Shanteri Baliga

    I made this today and added zucchini flowers on the top as a garnish and it was amazing! I’m hoping to try this again with potatoes, onions and squash.

  132. Kyle

    I have made this twice now and really enjoy it. I made it in a 9X13 casserole dish to save time. I added some baby crimini mushrooms that I thought added a nice earthiness to the medley. Wife likes it with more cheese, so i put another cup of parm on top.

  133. Christina

    This is my favorite squash recipe. I made one and froze it before cooking – cooked it from frozen as recommended in the recipe with an extra 10 minutes and it was delicious.

  134. Shelly

    I just have to say that this is one of my favourite squash recipes. I baked it all in a springform pan tonight and it served up nicely. I am the only person at work who is still taking home the free zucchini that everyone brings in …. because I know I am making this a few times.

  135. Katie

    I had two pounds of sliced summer squash leftover from a roommates wedding and had no idea what to do with it until I found this recipe.
    This is definitely the best thing I’ve had all week- dinner last night and lunch today with a poached egg on top. YUM!!!!!! Thank you for sharing this!!!

  136. Susan Glenn

    Made this tonight in a cast iron skillet and served it with grilled lamb chops-forgot the green onions when shopping, so sauteed a chopped Vidalia and added it with each layer. Also completely forgot the flour. It was absolutely wonderful, the crispy bottom was amazing, the squash wasn’t runny or mushy at all. We can’t wait to fight over the leftovers tomorrow! What a winner-would definitely make this ahead for dinner party or potluck.

  137. christine

    This is amazing! I can’t believe how much I LOVE this dish! I made it all in one 10 inch skillet and in oven longer and used pecorino cheese since I didn’t have parm. I also made squash a little thicker than potatoes using madoline. Absolutely fabulous – great flavor and will definitely make again and again.

  138. Irma

    I am waiting for this to come out of the oven. It smells magnificent! My squash were much thinner than the potatoes but I think it will make no difference in taste :) I am going to wait for it to cool down and eat it rewarmed for dinner, just like you recommended. Thanks Deb!

  139. Jon

    I made this the other day, and I will say it was almost perfect! The only issue was that the thyme was rather overpowering, but this might have partly been because I bought it at H-mart, an Asian market near my house. It might have been a variety of thyme that was more potent than what you usually find. XD That said, topping it with some eggs helped to diffuse the thyme flavor to much more pleasant levels, and everything else about it was heavenly!

    Next time i’m going to try using a mix of gold, russet, and purple potatoes from my local trader joes to see what it looks like! :D I’ll also cut down the thyme a bit while amping up the Parmesan cause I’m a cheese addict. :P The leftovers freeze quite well, especially if you defrost them in the microwave then finish heating them up in the toaster oven to get even crispier on top!

  140. Jen Manning

    I just made this with a little twist. I used patty pan and yukon golds and added the following; fresh parsley, garlic, paprika, and shaved parsnips. Half way through baking I added a little chicken stock….This was a huge hit. The thyme and parsnips were a delight. What a great recipe!

  141. sue

    I’m always looking for new vegetarian meals, this looked delicious and tasted scrumptious, I couldn’t stop eating it! Next time I’ll use a shallow casserole dish rather than 2 cake pans.

  142. deb

    Mary — Yes, I think you could skip the flour, or use a gluten-free blend instead. It’s about keeping the moisture in check, and not gluten/protein.

  143. Katy

    I used a 9 inch metal pan, and the resultant crunchiness was delicious! It was like eating a giant herb potato chip. My only substitution was dried thyme instead of fresh, and it was glorious people. I used this recipe since my man-friend hates zucchini and I had just been gifted some and wanted to experiment. Too bad he knows there is zucchini in it, otherwise I would totally try to trick him into eating it :D

  144. Nune

    I finally had a chance to make this recipe over the weekend and it was a major success. I didn’t have fresh herbs, so I used a small quantity of dry thyme and oregano, which helped to add some flavor. But, next time I’ll definitely invest in the fresh version for that extra oomph! This was absolutely delicious and I appreciated the addition of flour to keep the moisture from the squash at a minimum. Also a plus…hubby loved the recipe even though it didn’t have any meat in it! Total win. Thanks, Deb!!

  145. I have this in the oven right now! I was looking for summer squash recipes from the archives and thought i’d have the right(ish) ingredients for this. i also am using a cast iron pan with the 4 layers, but instead of parmesan i had to use (extra sharp) cheddar, red onion instead of green onion and dried thyme instead of fresh. i bet it will be delicious!

  146. stephanie

    i made this on wednesday and we didn’t get to eat it until friday…and it was AWESOME.

    i will say that i took a few liberties with the spice/cheese mix (i used the parmesan but also added some sharp white cheddar, i used the flour and the scallions but since i don’t like thyme i just used my penzey’s fox point seasoning) and i baked it in my little 7×10″ ikea glass casserole dish because i don’t have any cake/pie pans.

    i did four layers of yukon golds, three of the summer squash. i cooked it covered for 45 and then uncovered for 30 to account for a thicker torte, but the reheating for a half hour at 350 was perfect. i’m a cheese fiend so i definitely used quite a bit more than the 1 cup of parmesan but i can tell it would have been still really good made as directed.

    and for anyone out there with a “meat and potatoes” s/o, we had this as a side with jerk chicken and boyperson ate every bit of his two servings! (i initially just told him it was scalloped potatoes but i eventually got the “what did you say was in this?” question so i had to come clean, haha.) we had two squares left over which i’m going to eat for lunch today.

  147. Shelly

    AMAZING! So simple yet, so, so good and perfectly proportioned. Leftovers (if there are any!) would be great with a fried egg on top. I omitted sage, and used garlic salt, garlic powder and onion powder :)

    1. deb

      It should be fine with red potatoes. In general, the waxier the potato, the better it will work here. Red potatoes are slightly less waxy than yellow/yukon but definitely more so than russets/idaho.

  148. S

    I just made this tonight and it was delicious, and my toddler is currently happily eating it too. I did make a few changes:
    – 1/2 an onion, diced, because I didn’t have enough green onions
    – 5 tiny cloves of garlic, diced, mixed with the parmesan cheese
    – pinch of Aleppo pepper mixed with the cheesw
    – dried thyme instead of fresh because that’s what I had
    I also made it in a 10″ pan and this did seem way easier than dealing with filling two 8″ pans.
    Thanks Deb!