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Tangy Summer Vegetable Tian
Taste the international flavors of

"Gleaming skin; a plump elongated shape: the eggplant is a
vegetable you'd want to caress with your eyes and fingers,
even if you didn't know its luscious flavor."

- Roger Vergé

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Tangy Summer Vegetable Tian

The White Dog Cafe Cookbook:
Recipes and Tales of Adventure from
Philadelphia's Revolutionary Restaurant

by Judy Wicks and Kevin von Klause,
1998, Running Press

(Serves 4 to 8)

“This dish makes use of late summer’s surplus of tomatoes, basil, and
zucchini. It is best served at room temperature, making it a natural
supper for sultry nights. We squeeze as many vegetables as possible
into the tian, so it must be pressed when it comes out of the oven to
make it more compact and easier to serve,”

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons
extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons
red wine vinegar
1 large eggplant, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
2 tablespoons minced garlic
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 large tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 large zucchini, cut diagonally
into 1/4-inch slices
2 portobello mushrooms, stems removed,
cut into 1/4-inch slices
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
and separated into rings
1 medium yellow summer squash, cut
diagonally into 1/4-inch slices

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Oil a 10 x 7-inch baking pan.
2. Combine the basil, oregano, and thyme in a small bowl. In a separate
bowl, whisk together the olive oil and vinegar.
3. Arrange a single layer of the eggplant slices in the bottom of the pre-
pared baking dish. Sprinkle with a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette,
some of the mixed herbs, a sprinkling of the cheese, a pinch of the
minced garlic, a pinch of salt, and a grinding of black pepper. Top
with a single layer of sliced tomatoes. Sprinkle the tomatoes with
more of the vinaigrette, herbs, cheese, garlic, salt and pepper. Re-
peat with the zucchini, mushrooms, onion, yellow squash, remaining
eggplant, vinaigrette, herbs, cheese, garlic, salt, and pepper. When
finished, the layered vegetables will probably be higher than the sides
of the pan.
4. Oil a piece of aluminum foil and tightly cover the vegetables with it.
Set on the middle rack of the oven with a baking sheet underneath to
catch any juices. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove from the
oven, uncover, and carefully pour all of the excess juices into a bowl.
Reserve the liquid.
5. Place the tian on a baking sheet and re-cover it with the foil. Place
another baking pan of the same size on top of it and weigh down with
something heavy (ideally a brick, but a few cans of soup will work).
When the weight is place on, some juices may spill over the sides. Set
aside at room temperature for 1 hour.
6. Remove the weights and foil. Pour off any liquid and combine with
the reserved juices in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat.
Reduce the heat and cook until syrupy, about 5 minutes.
7. Cut the tian into wedges and serve at room temperature. Drizzle
each piece with some of the reduced vegetable juices.

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