Tomato Gratin

This is a custom French summer dish that I tweaked slightly. The entire thing cost me $4 to make $2 for a French Baguette and $2 for some tomatoes. Easy, cheap and delicious ?! Okay now! This is also perfect for warming up at work for leftovers! The bread stays crispy and it tastes amazing!

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Ingredients

  • 4-5 medium size tomatoes
  • 1 Baguette, either 1 large one or probably 2 small (Can also use whole grain bread)
  • Olive Oil
  • Fresh Basil, Parsley and Thyme (If you don’t have thyme, just go with basil and parsley!)
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 sweet onion ( I just used half of one)
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Salt, pepper, red crushed pepper and Italian seasoning
  • Baking dish

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven for 425 degrees. Slice your tomatoes thin, you can probably get at least 6 slices out of one tomato.
  2. Place tomatoes in bowl, season with salt, pepper, red crushed pepper, Italian seasoning and stir. Place tomatoes in rows in baking dish.
  3. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over tomatoes.

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4. Take baguette and cut into small cubes, put in a medium mixing bowl.

5. Chop your basil and parsley and put in bowl along with Thyme.

6. Finely dice your onion and mince garlic, add to bowl.

7. Season  bowl mixture with salt and pepper, then pour in olive oil. You want bread coated evenly in the oil, so pour at your own discretion. This allows the bread to become crispy.

8. Toss the cubed baguette in the fresh herbs, oil and seasoning.

9. Pour bread over tomatoes and use anything left in the bowl to drizzle over top.

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10. Bake for 25-30 minutes, around 20 minutes check that your bread is golden and not burning…everyone’s oven cooks differently so better to be on teh safe side.

11. Serve and enjoy!

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Vegetable Marrow Farci

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The perfect meal for a Meatless Monday. I found this recipe in my Titanic cookbook, so we’re going old school here. Vegetable Marrow Farci, is pretty much fancy for stuffed zucchini boats. They’re easy to make, delicious even warmed back up and perfect for anyone watching their calories.

Ingredients

Will need a medium to large skillet and a baking casserole dish.

  • 2 large zuchinni
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 1/2 cups finely diced mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2/3 cup cooked rice ( I used a $1 whole grain, 90 second steam pouch from Kroger)
  • salt and pepper
  •  1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs (Kroger has a can of these for 99cents)
  • 2 tbsp melted butter

Instructions

  1. Cut your zucchini in half, length wise creating two long spears each. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Hollow out your zucchini, put the guts to the side because we will be using these again.
  3. Place your hollowed out zucchini shells into your baking dish.

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4. Put your skillet on medium to medium high, add in your olive oil and your red onions and garlic. Saute until translucent, about 5 minutes.

5.While these are sauteing, dice up the reserved zucchini guts.

6.When your onions are a nice translucent color (not burnt) add in the dried oregano, tomato paste and the diced zucchini reserves. Cook for about 4-5 minutes. While doing so prepare your mushrooms.

7.Turn up the heat a little and add in your mushrooms, cook for about 5 minutes or until your vegetables are a nice brown. Now stir in your vinegar, let it saute for a few minutes. This is when I put my 90 second rice into the microwave to warm up.veg2

8.Now remove  the skillet from the heat, stir in your rice–add in your salt, pepper and your Parmesan cheese. Taste, taste, taste–make sure its how you want it.

9. Now comes the fun part, you’re going to restuff your zucchini shells with your filling. Don’t pack too tightly.

10. Once your shells are filled sprinkle bread crumbs over the top, maybe a little extra parmesan and then poor on a little melted butter to get those breadcrumbs toasty.

11. Place in oven and cook for 40 minutes. The zucchini should be tender, like stick a fork in it soft.

Maybe top with some fresh basil and enjoy. This can be a dish all on its own or a great side dish.