Fresh zucchini, tomatoes, and potatoes are sprinkled with herbs and then roasted until tender; a bit of cheese and then a little more roasting until everything is browned and slightly caramelized. A versatile side dish for almost any meal, I’ve served this with roast beef, Italian fried chicken, skillet pork chops, and many other dishes.
Vegetable Tians are so pretty to look at, you might think they are a complicated side dish. My youngest son helped me layer this one: he calls it a vegetable puzzle. Layer the alternating slices around the dish and fit them in as best you can. The beauty of the tian is really in how simple it is. You aren’t standing over a stove sautéing anything more than the onions. Once everything is in the dish, cover it, bake, and walk away. That is my favorite kind of cooking!
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large sweet yellow onion
- 2-3 cloves garlic
- 3 medium russet potatoes
- 3 medium size summer squash I use Italian zucchini, Mexican Grey, and Crookneck
- 4 large Roma tomatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese or Parmesan cheese
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat a 9" round or square baking dish with a thin layer of olive oil. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the onions and cook for about 7-8 minutes, until soft. Add the garlic and cook another minute or so until fragrant. Spread the onions and garlic across the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
- Slice the squash, tomatoes, and potatoes into 1/4" thick slices. Layer them alternately around the dish if it is round, or across the dish in rows if it is square. Drizzle with a tablespoon of olive oil, sprinkle with thyme, salt, and pepper. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 45 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with cheese and bake an additional 20 minutes, until browned. Enjoy!
Choose squash, tomatoes, and potatoes that are roughly the same diameter to make layering the slices easier. You can substitute 1/2 cup of previously frozen caramelized onions for the onions in this dish, just warm them in the skillet for about a minute and then add the garlic.