Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mandy's Bytes: Vegetable Tian

Today's recipe I found courtesy of Food Gawker, which led me to the recipe for Vegetable Tian as presented over at For the Love of Cooking. A tian is basically any casserole of roasted vegetables and cheese, and this one looked especially delicious so I had to try it. The ingredients are very simple:

Vegetable Tian
- 2 tbsp olive oil (divided)
- 1 large sweet yellow onion cut in half and sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1-2 russet potatoes, unpeeled
- 1 zucchini
- 1 yellow squash
- 3 large Roma tomatoes
- Sea salt, freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
- Dried thyme, to taste
- 1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese

 Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Since I didn't trust myself to simultaneously saute onions and slice veggies without messing something up, I prepped all the vegetables first. You want to cut the potatoes, squash, zucchini and tomatoes into 1/4 inch slices. Halve the onion and then slice it thinly. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a pan and saute the onions until they are soft and translucent.
Once the onions are translucent, add the minced garlic to the pan and saute for another minute. Prepare a baking dish by spraying it with cooking spray. Usually a tian would be made in a round baking dish, but I used a rectangular one, since that's what I had handy. After the garlic and onions have sauteed spread the mixture over the bottom of your baking dish.
Over the top of the onions you want to layer the other veggies, rotating types to create a colorful pattern. I had a few extra slices of zucchini and squash that I ended up sticking in the gaps here and there. Also the recipe calls for 3 tomatoes, I only used two and still had enough tomato to cover the whole dish.
Season the vegetables with salt, pepper and thyme to taste, don't be stingy either, I salted lightly and just ended up putting more salt on it later. After seasoning drizzle the remaining 1 tsbp of olive oil over the veggies. Cover the dish with tin foil or parchment paper, or you can use a covered baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes at 375 degrees, at this point the potatoes should be tender.
After the first 30 minute bake, uncover the dish and sprinkle on the Parmesan cheese. Return to the oven uncovered and bake for an additional 25-30 minutes. When finished the veggies will be roasted to perfection and covered with a tasty crust of melted cheese.
This is a delicious side dish that is easy to make, and would be good with just about anything. My original menu featured pasta with Italian sausage in vodka sauce, but because I'm only human, we ended up enjoying it with some frozen thin crust garlic chicken pizza instead.
Together they made quite the garlic overload but it was a fabulous dinner.

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