Nona's 'Tiedla': No-Garlic, No-Onion Vegetable Casserole

There are people who don't like garlic and onions and for this reason shy away from tomato-based Italian dishes. This "Tiedla" is adapted from a dish my friend's Italian grandmother made (without a recipe) that is seasoned with fresh herbs.

Servings: 12

Cook Time: 2 1/2 hours

Pair With: Try a Cal-Italian Sangiovese.

Source: Recipe and photo courtesy Tama Takahashi, Touring & Tasting Food Editor


8 ripe Roma tomatoes

8 medium potatoes

1 large zucchini or 8 6" zucchinis

handful of fresh parsley

2 sprigs of fresh marjoram

2 sprigs of fresh oregano

4 sprigs of fresh basil

extra virgin olive oil



grated Parmesan-Reggiano cheese


Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Boil a big pot of water, put in tomatoes, and cook just until the skin bursts (about 1 minute) then remove into a colander to cool. Peel and slice the potatoes thin (1/8"), slice the zucchini into 1/4" slices. Remove the stems of the herbs and chop together (the Italian grandmother used kitchen shears). Remove skins from the cooled tomatoes. Put the tomatoes into a wide bowl and mash thoroughly with a potato masher, then add the chopped herbs (do not drain the tomatoes). Spread a layer of zucchini on the bottom of a large casserole, then a layer of sliced potatoes, drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Continue this to fill the casserole, leaving an inch of space below the rim and ending the layering with a layer of zucchini rather than potato. Pour the tomato sauce over the vegetables, cover with tin foil and bake for the first hour. Remove tin foil and bake another hour. Check the casserole during the last hour--if it starts to look like it is getting too dry, replace the tin foil. When fully cooked, the potatoes should be soft. Top with grated Parmesan if desired.


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