I love this recipe for its adaptability. In spring I substitute asparagus for the eggplant, and in fall I use winter squash instead of summer squash. You can make it spicy by adding red pepper flakes. Olives are great addition. And if you are an omnivore, you can make a meal of this by adding chicken, shrimp, fish or Italian sausage and serving over pasta.

By / Photography By Maggie Freeman | July 28, 2017


Over medium heat, warm oil in Dutch over or deep skillet. Sauté onion and garlic for about 5 minutes.

Add eggplant, salt, bay leaf, fresh herbs and stir. Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally for 10-15 minutes or until eggplant is beginning to soften.

Add summer squash, zucchini, bell peppers, tomatoes, tomato paste and fresh-ground black pepper. Cover and simmer for about 10 more minutes or until vegetables are cooked to your desired doneness. (I like mine a little al dente and still bright in color.)

Serve hot, warm or at room temperature as a side or over grits or quinoa for a vegetarian entree. I like to garnish mine with chopped parsley and crumbled feta or goat cheese.

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  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 cups eggplant, cubed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, leaves removed from stems
  • 2 cups summer squash (such as Crookneck or Zephyr), cubed
  • 2 cups zucchini, cubed
  • 2 medium bell peppers (I prefer 1 green and 1 orange or yellow, to maximize colors)
  • 2 cups fresh tomato, diced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • Salt and pepper to taste
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