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Confit Bayaldi

This image courtesy of Joseph DeLeo

In this combination, Mediterranean vegetables are thinly sliced, layered, and then slowly cooked in the oven. This dish can be presented in two ways. Immediately after it has been cooked, it will be a loose, somewhat juicy vegetable mixture with a rustic appearance. If you refrigerate it overnight under a weight, to press out much of the moisture, you will have a firmly packed confit that makes a more refined presentation.

The confit could also be baked in individual tians.

NotesSlice all the vegetables as thin as possible.

Season the vegetable layers generously with salt and black pepper.

Keep the proportions of vegetable fairly balanced (two-thirds tomatoes would be too wet).

Make-ahead note:

The confit can be refrigerated overnight or up to 2 days; reheat over low heat for about 15 minutes. If it has been weighted, reheat in a 350°F. oven for about 15 minutes.

Cooking Methodbaking, sauteeing

CostInexpensive

Total Timeunder 4 hours

Make Ahead RecipeYes

Kid FriendlyYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe Courseappetizer, side dish, vegetable

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, peanut free, soy free, tree nut free, vegetarian

Equipmentbaking/gratin dish, mandoline

Mealdinner

Taste and Texturegarlicky, herby, savory

Type of Dishgratin, vegetable

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ small eggplant, unpeeled, halved lengthwise and sliced 1/8-inch thick
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced crosswise on the bias 1/8-inch thick
  • 1 tablespoon each minced fresh tarragon, sage, thyme, and parsley (optional)
  • 1 medium yellow squash, sliced crosswise on the bias 1/8-inch thick
  • 2 medium-size tomatoes, sliced 1/8-inch thick
  • Roasted Cod with Confit Bayaldi and Basil Oil
  • Grilled chicken, fish, or lamb

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and butter together over medium-high heat until the butter has melted. Add the onion and garlic and cook until very soft and transparent, 10 to 12 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

  2. Layer the vegetables and herbs in an 8 by 8-inch pan as follows: sautéed onions-garlic mixture; the eggplant drizzled with olive oil, and light salt and pepper; the zucchini sprinkled with half of the herbs, and light salt and pepper; the yellow squash, remaining herbs, and light salt and pepper; and the tomatoes. Drizzle olive oil over the top and cover tightly with foil. Place on a baking sheet to catch any overflowing juices, and bake 1½ hours, then remove the foil and bake another ½ hour.

  3. Carefully pour off the juices and discard. The confit is ready to be served, but it will be loose. For a nicer presentation, cover the cooled confit with parchment or waxed paper and a pan of the same size, place 4 soup cans in the pan to weight it, and refrigerate for 1 day or overnight. The confit will be firm enough to slice easily.

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