tian boats

May 10, 2013

tian boats

Back in July 2011 I posted a tian recipe which is super tasty and has been requested by dinner guests ever since. I will continue to love it and make it but this week I had a brilliant idea. Why not make tian boats that use one of the main ingredients, red pepper, as the vessel in which to bake these layered Mediterranean vegetables? I noted in the original post that a tian is a conical earthenware cooking vessel used in the Alpes-Maritimes area of France. But if you don’t live in the Alpes-Maritimes area of France, or you can’t source said conical earthenware vessel, or you are just plan lazy and want to take a short-cut, red peppers work just as well. Layered zucchini, eggplant, basil, garlic tomatoes, shallots, and thyme were never so easy or delicious. Or pretty.

4 red peppers, cut in half and cleaned of seeds

2 shallots, sliced very finely

2 garlic cloves, sliced very finely

1 zucchini, sliced very finely

1/2 eggplant, sliced very finely

2 tomatoes, sliced very finely

Small bunch basil

3 tbsps olive oil

sea salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsps organic cane sugar

A few sprigs of thyme

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Place red pepper halves in an oven proof baking dish open side up. Layer all your ingredients – shallots, zucchini, tomatoes, garlic, eggplant, and basil one by one – finishing with a slice of tomato. (I placed them in order of shallots, zucchini, tomato, basil, eggplant, garlic, tomato). Depending on the size of your red peppers, you may need to double up layers or keep them pretty thin.

Once layers are complete, drizzle each boat with olive oil. Add sea salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle a little bit of organic cane sugar on each, and then finish with a few sprigs of thyme.

Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes or until the boats are soft and the edges of the red pepper are slightly browned. Serve immediately with your favourite grain – quinoa is nice particularly in spring.

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