Sunday, 3 March 2013

The Tomato 'n Zucchini Food Challenge

Well it's been a week since I set myself the "eat as much zucchini and tomato" challenge (we had them coming out our ears) and we did it with flying colours. Next time I'll have to set the challenge longer, it was that good and none of us are sick of tomatoes or zucchini.

I think that comes down to how versatile these veggies are, they can be make into a plethora of different meals. Here are some of the meals that we had:

Tomato and Zucchini Pizza:

1 - Pizza base as previously blogged here.
2 - Ingredients thrown on top were zucchini, tomatoes, cheese, onion, olives, choritzo sausage and a bit of pesto mixed into tomato paste for the base. Yummo!

Used: 1 medium zucchini and lots of cherry tomatos

Zucchini and Tomato Tart:

This one was a total winner. Not as greasy as a egg pie and not as dense as a quiche, it was light and fluffy and super simple to make.

1 - Line a pie or quiche tray with some shortcrust pastry (I used the frozen variety from the super m)
2 - Dice an onion, crush two garlic cloves, finely dice two small/medium zucchinis, dice two or three large tomatoes and saute until all the ingredients are soft.
3 - Whisk 3 eggs, grate 1 cup tasty cheese (or whatever cheese you prefer) and add saute mixture to this. Stir through and add a good pinch of salt n pepper. I also added a good heaped spoon of flour to help thicken the mix a little but you don't have to do this.
4 - Put the mixture into your pie/quiche tin and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.

Used: 3 large tomatoes and two good sized zucchini

Baked Chicken Thighs with Tomatoes n Stuff:

I think this recipe I nicked off Jamie Oliver at some point but it's merged into my own through a bit of trial and error.

1 - In a fry pan, brown both sides of 4-6 chicken thighs (de boned)
2 - In a saucepan, steam some potatoes (I used new ones as they're around at the mo but you can use old ones too)
3 - Once step one and two is done, in a large baking tray, place chicken, potatoes (I smash them up a bit so they soak up the juices), lots of cut tomatoes, big slices of zucchini (but you can use other veg), dried or fresh herbs (oregano is good, as is dry mixed herbs/italian mix), drizzle over the lot some balsamic vinegar and olive oil.
4 - Bake uncovered until everything is cooked which should be about half and hour.

Used: 1 medium/large zucchini, 3 large tomatoes and a handful of cherry tomatoes.

Zucchini and Tomato Quesadillas:

So quick and easy and not too expensive.

1 - Buy a pack of soft tortilla breads
2 - In a frypan, saute some diced tomato, onion and zucchini
3 - In a bowl, tip a drained tin of kidney (or similar) beans, some chopped jalapenos and your saute mixed veg.
4 - Using a sandwich press, lay 1 tortilla bread, on top of that put grated cheese and your bean mix. Fold and toast until golden.

Used: 1 medium zucchini, 2 tomatoes.

Tomato and Zucchini Risotto:

I always make risotto but I add whatever meat/veg I have at the time.

1 - Heat some oil in a large wok/frypan or saucepan. Fry up some diced onion and 2 cloves of crushed garlic. Add 1 cup alborio rice.
2 - Add chicken stock, one cup at a time and add more as the rice soaks it up.
3 - After you have added your first cup or two of stock, add in some chopped up tomatoes, chopped zucchini and any other ingredients you want included (I used mushroom but you can add chicken for example).
4 - When your rice is almost cooked, add a tbs butter, a good dash of cream, a handful of cherry tomatoes and a bit of fresh herbs like basil. Salt and pepper.

Used: 1 medium zucchini, two large tomatoes and a handful or two cherry tomatoes.

The best meal I think we had all week though, despite all the good cooking, was a good old tomato sandwich on fresh cooked bread out of the bread maker. Roge and I have eaten this for lunch almost every day and with no complaints. Yum! Fresh grown tomatoes are so much better than store bought ones and this time of year you need to make the most of them.

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