Tomato, Zucchini, and Yellow Squash Gratin

Tomato, Zucchini, and Squash Gratin

Summertime produce is HERE, in all its glory.

Juicy, sweet, bright red tomatoes.

An ABUNDANCE of summer squash – the gift that keeps on giving.

Stone fruit everywhere, so ripe and succulent, the juices dribble down your chin with every bite.

Bundles of fragrant herbs, growing like weeds, ready to be tossed into salads, soups, and pestos.

Can you tell I LOVE summer??

One of the easiest ways to use up a TON of summer tomatoes and squash is with a gratin.

Simply slice all the veggies nice and thin, arrange in pretty layers, and top with olive oil, salt and pepper, garlic, fresh herbs, and cheese.

Bake for about 30 minutes, then serve!

It’s an impressive side dish that lets the flavors of the vegetables take center stage.

If you really want this dish to wow you, take the extra time to pick up some produce from your local farmers market. You won’t regret it!

 

5 from 1 vote
Tomato, Zucchini, and Squash Gratin
Print
Tomato, Zucchini, and Yellow Squash Gratin
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
50 mins
 
Servings: 6
Ingredients
  • 1 pound cocktail tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 pound zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 pound yellow summer squash, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • Generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2/3 cup shredded Romano cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. Get out a large 4.5 quart pyrex baking dish. Working in rows, alternately layer the slices of zucchini, yellow squash, and tomato. Prop the slices up a little bit so that the start of each row is leaning against the edge of the pyrex dish at an angle (this makes it easier to layer the slices). 

  3. Once you have filled the baking dish, drizzle each row with a generous pour of extra virgin olive oil (this will help prevent the gratin from drying out). 

  4. Next, sprinkle the whole dish with the minced garlic and thyme. Season generously with kosher salt and ground black pepper, then sprinkle the Romano cheese over the top.

  5. Place the whole dish in the oven, and bake for about 30 minutes, or until the cheese is just starting to turn golden. Remove from the oven and let rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.

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Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps

Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps

Lettuce wraps make perfect summer night dinners.

First of all, they’re easy

Like, wash off some lettuce, quickly cook up some meat, toss in some herbs, and whisk together a basic sauce and you’re done.

Plus, you can do so many different flavor twists.

Mexican, Thai, Indian, etc… they would all be delicious.

This week, I decided to go Thai.

Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps - delicious, easy, and packed with flavor!

These wraps are bright, fresh, and packed with flavor.

Simply saute some pork and garlic until golden brown, then turn off the heat and toss in some fresh basil, cilantro, mint, onion, and fresh peppers.

Stuff the pork mixture into crisp butter lettuce leaves, and spoon a simple sauce over top, made with lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and more chiles.

The results are little pockets of deliciousness, packed with tender meat, fresh herbs, spicy chiles, vibrant fresh lime juice, and salty fish sauce.

I really like serving them with a giant bowl of fried rice on the side. Recipe coming soon!

Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps -ready in just 30 minutes!

 

Print
Thai Pork Lettuce Wraps
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 
Servings: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 4 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 red serrano or jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 10 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 small red onion, cut in half and very thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup torn fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup torn fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh mint leaves
Instructions
  1. Carefully remove the butter lettuce leaves from the head of lettuce, wash with cool water, and set out to dry on a towel.

  2. Next, assemble the dipping sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, and 1 of the sliced peppers. Season lightly with salt and pepper and set aside.

  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the ground pork and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned (about 10 minutes or so). Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes, until softened and fragrant.Turn off the heat and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the onion, basil, cilantro, mint, and remaining pepper slices.

  4. Serve family style, with the pork mixture, lettuce leaves, and dipping sauce. To assemble, spoon the pork into a lettuce leaf and either dip the wraps into the sauce or spoon over the top before eating.

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Spice Rub Roasted Chicken

Spice Rub Roasted Chicken

Spice rubs and chicken were just born for each other.

Especially when grilled or roasted on high heat.

The spices takes on a deliciously smoky accent, and the meat is piping hot and succulently juicy.

(Bonus points if you left the skin on & get to enjoy all that crispy goodness).

Spice Rub Roasted Chicken

You’ve seen me do spice-rub baked chicken breasts, which I love for their ease and simplicity, but a whole bird slathered in rub & roasted on high heat?

That’s a whole new experience.

Spice Rub Roasted Chicken stuffed with lemon and shallot

There are a few keys to deliciously juicy spice-rub chicken.

  1. The heat has to start out lower. Typically, I blast my roasted chickens on high heat to get that extra crispy golden skin. But when you’ve covered the bird with a spice rub, you’ve got be careful not to burn those spices. Since chickens take awhile to cook, it’s best to start out on low heat while the tender flesh cooks.
  2. Crank up the heat at the end. Once the bird is almost done, say, after an hour or so in the oven, then you can turn up the heat and let the skin crisp up and brown the spices a little.
  3. Stuff the cavity with aromatics. Since we aren’t going for the same cracklin skin that an unseasoned bird has, we can stuff that cavity of the bird until it’s overflowing. My favorites are lemon and shallot, which impart a slight onion & citrus flavor to the meat as they cook. I avoid stuffing the cavity on my basic roasted chickens, since the steam from the vegetables can hinder the crisping of the chicken skin, but I’m not worried about that w. my spice rubbed chicken.
  4. Let it rest after cooking. Once the bird reaches an internal temp of 165 degrees, let it rest out of the oven for a bit before you slice into it. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, instead of spilling out all over your cutting board.

Spice Rub Roasted Chicken with Mustard Chili Rub

Once the bird is done, serve it with some delicious sides.

Grilled Zucchini with Mint, Lemon, & Feta, World’s Easiest Garlic Mashed Potatoes, or a Simple Side Salad all go great 🙂

 

Print
Spice Rub Roasted Chicken
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
1 hrs 30 mins
Total Time
1 hrs 40 mins
 
Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 3 1/4 lb fryer chicken
  • 2 small lemons, quartered
  • 1 large shallot, quartered
  • olive oil, for seasoning
For the spice rub:
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 

  2. Mix together all of the spice rub ingredients in a small bowl, and set aside.

  3. Remove the chicken from any packaging it might be in, and discard any of the innards that might be in the cavity. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, and set on a roasting rack inside of a roasting pan. Drizzle the chicken with olive oil, and rub all over with your hands.

  4. Stuff the cavity of the chicken with the lemon and shallot, then sprinkle the chicken all over with the spice rub. Also use your fingers to separate the chicken skin from the breast area, and rub some of the spice rub under the skin. Use as much or as little of the rub as you want, to taste, probably around 1/4 cup. If you don't use all of the rub, you can reserve the extra for another use, if desired.

  5. Place the roasting pan in the oven, and let the chicken roast for about 1 hour. Increase the heat to 425 degrees Fahrenheit, and roast for another 30 minutes or so, or until the skin is crispy and the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. If it's not quite there yet after the 90 minutes, continue cooking until it reaches the proper temperature.

  6. When the chicken is done, remove it from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before carving. Enjoy!

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