The food, he cooked three dishes for us, Potato and Parsnip Gratin already on my website, the one I posted was from his cookbook which was with potatoes only, if you want to add parsnips just add half potatoes, half parsnips. He also cooked his Pearl Barley Risotto with Wild Mushrooms which happens to be my husband's favourite risotto, and is also already posted on my website. So I was very excited that 2 out of the 3 recipes he made are my families favourites.
Then the third dish was this Tian Provencal, now I love eggplant, zucchini, tomato and onions. I love rosemary and thyme, so when he made this I knew it was going to be cooked for dinner that night.
First I had to stop and get the ingredients, with a slight detour into wheel and barrow to buy myself a new dish to cook it in. I love homewares stores, I love looking in them, seeing what's new.
Anyway ingredients purchased, what to serve with it. As I had spent the morning watching a man cook for me, I thought it fit that when I got home I got my husband to cook for me to, make it the perfect day. So I thought I'll cook the side dish while my husband can barbecue some T-bones steaks for us.
Dinner was delicious. The aromas coming from the oven whilst the Tian Provenal was cooking made me know I was going to enjoy it. Teamed with barbecue T-bone, dinner was amazing.
The amount of vegetables will depend on the size of your baking dish, mine was a base measurement of 28cm x 20cm rectangle, but as it is so simple you can add extra vegetables and make it bigger, or reduce the amount of vegetables to make a smaller portion. Manu's recipe stated 1kg of eggplant, 1kg zucchini, 1kg tomatoes. I found that was too much, so just think about your baking dish and think equal quantities of those three vegetables. Now you also want to have your vegetables similar in size, so to match the size of a zucchini, you want to slice the tomatoes and eggplants in half, then slice them.
So here is a great barbecue/party dish, as it serves 6-8 people. Simple and yet so tasty.
2 onions, peeled, finely sliced
4 cloves garlic, peeled, chopped
Extra virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 220C/200 fan forced.
You want your vegetables similar in size, so match your tomatoes and eggplant to your zucchini.
Eggplant, cut in half lengthways (from stem to top), then slice in to 1/2-1 cm thick slices.
Tomatoes, cut in half lengthways (from stem to top, if the tomato is large), then slice in to 1/2-1 cm thick slices.
Zucchini slice in to 1/2-1 cm thick slices.
Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil into a frying pan over medium heat, add the onions, sauté the onions until lightly golden. Add the garlic and sauté a further 2 minutes, season with some salt and pepper.
Drizzle some more extra virgin olive oil into the base of your baking dish, spread your onion and garlic evenly over the base.
Now vertically layer the tomatoes in one row, then the eggplant, zucchini, eggplant, tomato then zucchini, until you get to the other side of the dish.
Drizzle a good amount of extra virgin olive oil over the vegetables. It needs to be a generous amount (approx. 1/2 cup, I really didn't measure) as this will be part of the sauce at the bottom, and will ensure your vegetables won't be dry. Sprinkle over some rosemary and thyme (to taste) and season well with salt and pepper.
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