The other day I was searching through the fridge looking for inspiration for a side dish to go with our hamburgers that Jake was grilling up. I found sliced zucchini, a baggie of mushrooms, & lots of cheese. I thought an Italian style veggie casserole would be good. So I started gathering ingredients & here's what I came up with.
Italian-style Veggie Bake
What you need:
*1-2 (depending on size) thinly sliced zucchini, spread out & dried on paper towels for at least 20 minutes.
*Approx. 1 pint of mushrooms, sliced; I had not dried these on a paper towel, but I would definitely recommend it. Drying the veggies helps them soak in the flavor of the sauce when it's cooking.
*Cheese; we use lots of cheese. Medium & sharp cheddar and parmesan are staples in our house. Other favorites are asiago, romano, blue, mozzarella & cotija. For this dish I used medium cheddar and parmesan
*1/3-1/2 of a large (16 oz?) jar of pasta sauce
*Casserole dish with cover
Pre-heat your oven to 425F.
Layer your ingredients. I put a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of the pan. Add zucchini, mushrooms, and other veggies you may like to add, more sauce, cheese. Repeat.
Cover & cook until the cheese is melted. Remove the cover and continue baking until the cheese gets that lovely browned color.
For this dish I baked it at about 425F for approx. 25 minutes, then baked it for another 10-15 minutes or so without the cover. I just keep an eye on things & when it looks done, it's done!
As you probably noticed, unless I'm using someone else's recipe I don't measure things out or time things. I'm trying to get better about it, but often times I just don't think about it.
Dish review: This is definitely a recipe to keep and make again & again. Even "Where's the Meat" Jake loved it! :)
I used 1/2 of the large can of pasta sauce. Next time I will probably only use about 1/3 because it was a little too "saucy" for my taste. I liked this because you can make it as complex or simple as you want. You can add olives, onions, peppers, basil, spices, artichokes, whatever your tastebuds are asking for.
If you happen to try this or any of my other Sunday Brunch recipes I'd love to hear how they work out for you. I hope everyone has a wonderful Sunday, we're off to the Devils Tower for a cowboy poetry/music gathering. :D