Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch baking dish with 1 tablespoon butter. Peel and seed squash, then thinly slice using a hand slicer, such as a Benriner or Mandoline slicer. Layer squash in baking dish, sprinkling some of salt and pepper between each layer. When baking dish is half filled, sprinkle 1/2 of cheese and thyme over squash. Continue layering squash with salt and pepper. Pour cream evenly over top layer, then sprinkle with remaining cheese and thyme. Cover baking dish with foil and bake until squash is tender, about 45 minutes. Remove foil from baking dish and preheat broiler. Broil gratin until top is browned about 4 minutes. Serve.
When America's Test Kitchen set their tasters loose on an 18-month-old wedge of Parmigiano-Reggiano, their verdict was unanimous: The closer to the rind, the better it was. Molly Birnbaum, their executive editor of Cook's Science, tells us why that is, and shares a recipe for Parmesan-Crusted Asparagus.