Sunday, July 13, 2014

Zucchini and Pepper Ciambotta

Ciambotta is a vegetable stew whose ingredients can vary according to what you have on hand. Bubba and the Crew love it with some prosciutto and crusty bread served alongside. This main-dish vegetable stew also makes a delicious accompaniment to roast chicken, fish, or meat.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 TABLESPOONS OLIVE OIL
  • 2 LARGE ONIONS, CHOPPED
  • 4 SMALL FENNEL BULBS { ABOUT 1 POUND EACH }, TRIMMED OF STEMS AND TOUGH OUTER LEAVES, THINLY SLICE { SEE TIP } RESERVE FRONDS
  • 2 LARGE RED BELL PEPPERS, CUT INTO 1-INCH PIECES
  • 6 CLOVES GARLIC, FINELY CHOPPED
  • 2 CANS { 28 OUNCES } FIRE ROASTED WHOLE TOMATOES IN JUICE
  • 8 MEDIUM ZUCCHINI, CUT INTO 1/2-INCH PIECES
  • 2 POUNDS FRESH GREEN BEANS, TRIMMED AND CUT INTO 1-INCH PIECES
  • 1 TEASPOON SALT 
  • 2/3 CUP LOOSELY PACKED FRESH BASIL LEAVES, THINLY SLICED
  • 2/3 CUP LOOSELY PACKED FENNEL FRONDS, CHOPPED

DIRECTIONS:

  1. IN A 10-QUART DUTCH OVEN OR STOCKPOT, HEAT OIL OVER MEDIUM HEAT UNTIL HOT. ADD ONION FENNEL; COOK 15 MINUTES OR UNTIL VEGETABLES ARE LIGHTLY BROWNED AND TENDER, STIRRING OCCASIONALLY. 
  2. ADD RED PEPPER AND GARLIC AND COOK 5 MINUTES OR UNTIL PEPPER IS TENDER CRISP.
  3. ADD TOMATOES WITH JUICE, ZUCCHINI, GREEN BEANS, AND SALT; HEAT TO BOILING OVER MEDIUM-HIGH HEAT, STIRRING AND BREAKING UP TOMATOES WITH A SPOON.
  4. REDUCE HEAT TO MEDIUM-LOW; COVER AND SIMMER 30 MINUTES OR UNTIL VEGETABLES ARE VERY TENDER. STIR IN ALL BUT 4 TABLESPOONS BASIL AND 4 TABLESPOONS FENNEL FRONDS; TOP WITH REMAINING BASIL AND FENNEL FRONDS TO SERVE.

ACTIVE TIME: 15 MINUTES
TOTAL TIME: 1 HOUR
MAKES: 16 MAIN-DISH SERVINGS