ZUCCHINI, FENNEL, RED PEPPER, AND MINT TORTA I’d like to share this recipe that my older son made up on the spot, based on vegetables that we had in the apartment, plus some herbs from our grocery store downstairs, which does not have a broad selection. He originally wanted some basil but they had none. He came back with a beautiful bunch of fresh mint instead. Lucky for us I had just learned from my fellow cooking friend, Margaret, that mint is a relative of basil! Most people know mint as an herb that makes your breath fresh, but it’s been used since antiquity in food, cosmetics, and they’ve even found mint in Egyptian tombs! Fennel is another great addition to any meal, as it’s full of antioxidants and Vitamin C! It’s also a source of fiber, potassium, and has been proven to help fight cancer. We meant to add fresh grated Parmesan, but honestly it wasn’t needed. The clean tasting vegetables were just delightful. This son is a great cook – he just gets in there and does things! Fearless and big, that’s what I call him, to which he says, “Thank you!” ZUCCHINI, FENNEL, RED PEPPER AND MINT TORTA 3 zucchinis 1 and 1/2 fennel bulbs 2 large red peppers 3 – 4 tbs. olive oil Salt Pepper ½ bunch of fresh mint leaves Broil red peppers, checking and turning until all skin is blackened. Using tongs, place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap until cool. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees. Slice zucchini and fennel on a mandoline, somewhere between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick. Using 1 or 2 tbs. of olive oil for each vegetable, toss separately in a bowl, with salt and pepper (test and taste for proper seasoning) and lay out each on separate baking sheets. Roast zucchini and fennel until crisp tender. Check in 20 minutes. The fennel will most likely take a little longer. This is why you keep them on separate baking sheets. Peel the red pepper, core, remove the seeds and cut into 1-inch wide strips. Layer the zucchini, fennel, red pepper and mint leaves in 10 inch round dish, repeating again until all is used up. Place a plate on top and weigh it down to press ingredients together. We used a 28 oz. can of tomatoes along with a large heavy mason jar of honey on top of the plate. Press for an hour or two. Then carefully slide the torta out, top side up, on a large round cake plate. Cut into pie wedge serving pieces and enjoy! We used only two red peppers, but three might be better. If you really wanted to, you could also add a layer of grated Parmesan cheese. Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYou must be logged in to post a comment.