Tag Archives: zucchini

Zucchini, Tomato and Sweet Potato Gratin

Eating with your eyes is just as important as tasting with your tongue. I know I have mentioned this in the past but it is worth mentioning again. If you are going to prepare a dish for family, friends or yourself, you want it to look appealing. Combining different colors is an easy way to create visual beauty with food. This recipe is a nice blend of green, red and orange. Layering the vegetables in a circular pattern also made this a very attractive dish.

Gratins originated in French cuisine and has been adopted in many other culinary cuisines. I wasn’t sure exactly what gratin was until I saw one made on a cooking show. On this particular show the chef made potato au gratin which was gorgeous because of the crispy brown topping. Turns out a gratin is considered the technique of topping a dish with breadcrumbs or grated cheese then browning it.

While most of the gratin recipes I have seen are made with sliced white potatoes I wanted to think outside the box and combine potatoes with other vegetables. Plus, I wanted to make the dish pop with color. Hence, my Zucchini, Tomato and Sweet Potato Gratin. A ring of beauty and a delightful dish.

Zucchini, Tomato and Sweet Potato Gratin


2 plum or vine ripe tomatoes sliced

1 large zucchini sliced

1 large sweet potato peeled and sliced

½ red onion sliced

½ cup shredded Parmesan or mozzarella cheese

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp minced garlic

1 tbsp salt

½ tbsp ground black pepper

½ tsp dried thyme

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Coat bottom of a large iron skillet with 1 tbsp olive oil.  Add minced garlic and spread around the skillet. Alternate slices of zucchini, tomatoes, and sweet potatoes in a circular pattern around the iron skillet. Place red onion slices over the other veggies then season with salt, ground black pepper and thyme. Drizzle with remaining olive oil and sprinkle with shredded cheese. Place on the lower shelf of the oven and bake for 35 minutes. Move to top rack and back for 20 – 25 minutes more. Test potatoes with a knife to make sure they are cooked and soft.


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Roasted Zucchini and Tomatoes

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Ham hocks, fat back and salt pork are some of the key ingredients to southern cooking. Whether you are fixing beans, stews, collard greens or other vegetables you will probably find one of those ingredients in the recipe. Growing up, all the women in my family would flavor parts of the meal with either salt pork or ham hocks. Back then I did not hesitate to eat anything my mom fixed unless it was wild game. Now? It is a different story. I still like ham hocks but I have found better ways to flavor food.

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Instead of sauteing zucchini and tomatoes in salt pork and bacon grease I now roast zucchini and tomatoes in the oven with a little olive oil . The end result is the same except it has a lot less calories and a lot less fat. The one thing this dish did not lose was flavor.

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The natural flavor of the zucchini and tomatoes along with sliced onions comes through and is enhanced by a few herbs and seasonings. Simple sometimes says it best and this dish is definitely simple. Slice, sprinkle, drizzle and roast. What could be simpler than that?

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Roasted zucchini and tomatoes might just become your go to side dish whenever you need a little something extra bursting with flavor!

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Roasted Zucchini and Tomatoes

2 zucchinis sliced
1 large onion sliced
1 lb Campari tomatoes seeded (can use plum tomatoes)
2 cloves garlic chopped
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp salt
1 tsp pepper
½ tsp basil
½ tsp sugar
cooking spray

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Spray a rime cookie sheet with cooking spray. Layer sliced onions on bottom of cookie sheet. Add zucchini and tomatoes. Sprinkle with garlic, salt, pepper, sugar and basil. Drizzle olive oil over veggies. Place in oven and roast for 25 to 30 minutes. Stir veggies mid way through roasting.