Marrow & Goat’s Cheese Gratin

This weekend’s planned camping trip to Whitstable had to be cancelled because of the shitty and weirdly biblical weather we are having this summer. So I found myself on a Sunday afternoon at the beginning of August wanting nothing more than to curl up on the sofa in a dressing gown and eat comforting wintery food as outside it rained and rained from an eerie yellow sky. Thank god evolution for food. Especially cheese.

Marrow & Goat's Cheese Gratin

We had a healthy crop of marrows from our balcony this year

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 40 – 50 minutes
Skill level: Easy
Serves: 2 hungry/greedy people


  • 1 marrow
  • 1 onion – finely chopped
  • garlic – 2 cloves – crushed
  • tin of tomatoes
  • tomato or V8 vegetable juice – 300ml
  • sugar – 2tsp
  • balsamic – 2tsp
  • soft goat’s cheese – 200g
  • mature cheddar – grated – 100g
  • s&p

Start by preheating the oven to 200C (gas mark 6)

Sauté the onion and garlic until softened. Add the tomatoes, juice, sugar and balsamic and heat through. Season to taste.

Cut the marrow in half lengthways, skin and deseed. Cut into 15mm ‘C-shaped’ slices.

Place the marrow in a suitable oven-proof dish and pour over the tomato sauce.

Bake for about 30 minutes or until the marrow has become softened but not soggy. Check occasionally and cover with a lid or tin foil if it looks like it is drying out.

Roughly mix together the two cheeses and spoon onto the top of the dish.

Grill for a few minutes until the cheeses have melted.



Take a crappy photograph.

Marrow & Goat's Cheese Gratin

Have seconds.

Verdict: To be honest I thought this was going to be a functional meal unworthy of a blog, so didn’t take any photographs. However, it turned out to be so tasty I had to rush into the kitchen and take a few snaps of the left-overs before we finished them off. The cheeses lovingly blended with the tomatoes to form a rich creamy sauce which contrasted perfectly with the subtlety of the marrow.

Drink: A pair of Leffe followed by the last of our holiday wine – El Coto Rioja.

Entertainment: We are currently watching the first series of the highly entertaining ‘Waking the Dead’. Lynda Bellingham played a bereaved mother and beaten wife, making this episode look like a macabre social-realist Oxo advert. Great stuff.


  1. I’ve never had marrow before and I’ve always thought it was just a typo when I see the label! I didn’t know it was an actual vegetable. Such a curious name for a vegetable.

  2. Hi TS and/or JS

    I’m curious … a typo of what exactly?

    Barrow? Harrow? Sparrow?

    By the way, this morning I thought up this joke:

    Q. What does a marrow wear to the beach?
    A. A zucchini.

    I’m so funny.


  3. I never thought to use v8 vegetable juice before, nice idea. I agree the weather is very very odd. A girl doesn’t know what to do when dressing herself in the morning. It’s very stressful. We tried growing food on our balcony this year, the tomatoes did well and the salad leaves are unstoppable but the potatoes were a total washout. Both plants looked really healthy but when we dug them up there were three measly potatoes on each plant. Oh, how we laughed.

  4. Hi Helen, yep we’ve had similar results from our balcony – a potential glut of tomatoes, a salad worth of peppery radishes, an odd collection of salad leaves and beetroot which were permanently stuck in childhood. There are some strawberries, but the lack of a summer has made them reluctant to commit themselves to fruit. It’s hardly Tom and Barbara self-sufficiency but it’s a start, and it’s great to have fresh herbs readily available.

    We also invested five whole pounds in a Tower Hamlets wormery but so far have been too squeamish to actually buy the necessary worms.


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