Sunday, April 19, 2009

Making Vegetables Interesting Again

I have to admit that although I love vegetables, I don't often do anything very exciting with them. Typically they are steamed, and by steamed I mean microwaved, and served with spray butter. BORING! In the summer they are spruced up a little when they are grilled and occasionally roasted. 

The reason for this, I believe, is that by the time I've made a main dish I'm usually done being creative and cooking. It's all to easy to pull out that bag of frozen vegetables and pop them in the microwave. 

As the days have warmed up, I find myself fantasizing about all the yummy vegetables to be purchased at the farmers market and wondering how I might jazz up our vegetables. When I came across this recipe for Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Vegetables from Giada De Laurentiis, I had to give it a try. Although the boys would only eat a red pepper strip out of it, Rich and I loved it. I'm sure it will be even better when fresh, local produce is available.

Olive and Sun-Dried Tomato Vegetables 

  • 1/3 cup olive oil, plus 3 tablespoons
  • 5 oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons halved pitted small black olives, such as kalamata
  • 2 tablespoons halved pitted green olives
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Kosher salt for seasoning, plus 1/2 teaspoon
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 1 zucchini, ends trimmed and discarded, cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1 yellow summer squash, ends trimmed and discarded, cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cored, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch strips
In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/3 cup olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and thyme. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. In a medium skillet, heat remaining 3 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallots and cook until translucent and tender, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the zucchini, yellow squash, red bell pepper, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring frequently, for 6 to 8 minutes until the vegetables are tender. Add the warm vegetables to the oil mixture and toss until coated. 

Transfer the vegetables to a serving bowl. Serve immediately.

**We had this with fish and garlic pasta. It was also delicious mixed in with the pasta.

1 comment:

  1. sounds good. now if i could just get my personal chef to make it . . .