Possibly the easiest and most versatile Italian side dish, it's also very healthy. The only prep work is chopping veggies and preheating the oven. The best part about this dish for me is that it allows me to focus on cooking the main course. All I have to do is stir the veggies from time to time. As far as flavor goes, the caramelized onion and garlic really bring out the best in the other veggies.
1 or 2 onions
Several cloves of garlic
Veggies, such as eggplant, zucchini, summer squash, bell peppers, mushrooms. Use anything you think will taste good. (My favorite combination is onion, garlic, eggplant, red pepper, and mushroom.)
Extra virgin olive oil
Cook Time: 1 hour
1. Chop all veggies and preheat oven to 450 degrees.
2. On a large cooking sheet, add garlic, salt, rosemary, and all veggies, except mushrooms. Rosemary pieces can be large, but the more broken up the better. Pour two turns of the pan of olive oil, then mix. Add more olive oil if needed.
3. Cook for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally (the less you stir, the crispier the vegetables will get. I’m a big fan of sweet, caramelized garlic, so I only once or twice).
4. Add mushrooms and cook 10-20 minutes more. Taste for salt, then serve as a side.
Next week we'll try one of Puglia's most quintessential antipasti: Polpettini di Carne aka Mini-Meatballs. Oh yeah baby: they're deep fried.