Thursday, November 17, 2011

Mediterranean Vegetable Pie


There is talk of snow for the coming weekend. I don't know about you, but I am certainly not ready for snow. The lazy, golden days of summer are still a recent memory for me and I want to revel in them for as long as possible. My first 10k race of the cooler season is this Saturday, with a forecast for freezing rain. Oh Northwest, how you tease and torment me. 


To keep warm and happy during these gray days, I am trying to eat as many vegetables as possible. Hearty dishes filled with tasty ingredients and love. This included my version of a Perry's Plate recipe, the Mediterranean Vegetable Pie.


Not being a fan of eggplant, I opted out of that ingredient from the start. I also modified the recipe by using fewer tomatoes, as well as both red and green ones. The farmer's market had fabulous yellow beets the weekend I made this dish, hence how they found their way into the pie. This is definitely a comfort food kind of recipe, perfect for a cold day. Enjoy and stay warm! 

Mediterranean Vegetable Pie
Adapted from: Mediterranean Roasted Vegetable Pie 

  • 2-3 small to medium green tomatoes, halved and cored
  • 1 large red tomato, halved and cored
  • 2 yellow beets, diced 
  • 1 medium-sized zucchini, cut into 1/3-inch dice
  • 1 medium-size onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup + 1 T olive oil 
  • Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 T each, chopped fresh parsley, basil, and oregano leaves
  • 4 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup)
  • 1 T rice wine vinegar
  • 4 T butter, melted
  • 8 sheets of phyllo dough (about 14x18 inches each), defrosted if frozen
  • Salt and pepper to taste 
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly oil a 9x13 baking dish and a large rimmed baking sheet or shallow roasting pan.

Arrange tomatoes, cut-side down, in a single layer in the baking dish. Roast for about 30 minutes, until tomatoes are tender and begin to turn brown in spots.

Meanwhile, toss the beets, zucchini, and onion in a large bowl with 1/4 cup of the heat-safe oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Arrange in a shallow layer in the other prepared pan. (No need to wash the bowl. You'll use it again later.)

Place the roasting pan in the oven with the tomatoes. Roast for about 30 minutes until vegetables are tender and beginning to turn brown, stirring every 10 minutes or so. If both pans don't fit in the oven together, place the tomatoes on the middle rack and the vegetables on the bottom rack. Rotate them a couple of times for even roasting. When you remove all of the vegetables from the oven, reduce the temperature to 375 degrees F.

When the tomatoes are cool enough to handle, pull the skins off. This should be easy, but don't worry about stubborn parts that stick. Combine the peeled tomatoes and roasted vegetables in the large bowl you used earlier. Add the garlic and fresh herbs. Toss to mix well, then gently mix in the cheese. Season lightly withe salt and pepper (to taste), adding the vinegar, if needed, to balance the sweetness of the tomatoes. DO AHEAD: You can make the filling up to two days ahead. Just cover and chill until it's needed.

Combine butter and remaining 1 T of oil. Brush some of the butter on the bottom of a deep 9 or 10 inch pie plate. Center 1 sheet of phyllo in the pie plate, allowing the edges to hang over. Brush the phyllo with a bit of butter. Top with 4 more sheets of phyllo, brushing each with butter before adding the next. (Arrange the sheets so there is excess hanging all around the pie plate instead of in just two places.) Spoon the vegetable and cheese mixture into the pie plate. Fold the edges over, brushing them with a little butter. Layer the remaining 3 sheets of phyllo over the top, brushing each layer with butter and either tucking the edges in the side of the plate or folding them toward the middle.

With a sharp, serrated knife, cut the pie into wedges through the top sheets only. Don't cut all the way through the bottom layer. Bake for 30 minutes, until crust is golden brown. (Maybe a few minutes longer if the filling has been refrigerated.)

Let the pie rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

3 comments:

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