- 1 medium firm eggplant (about 1 1/4 lbs.), cut into 1 x 1 x 2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large bulb fennel–trimmed, a handful of fronds reserved, bulb halved and cut into 1-inch-thick slices or wedges
- 2 medium zucchini (about 6 oz.)
- 1 onion
- 6 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 roasted red peppers in water, patted dry, cut into large bite-size pieces
- 1 can (28 oz.) San Marzano tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons EVOO
- Crusty bread, for mopping
1. Preheat the oven to 475°.
2. Sprinkle salt over the eggplant and let drain on a kitchen towel.
3. Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high to high. Add the olive oil, two turns of the pan. Add the fennel. While the fennel cooks, prep the next ingredients and add to the skillet as you finish: Halve and seed the zucchini and cut into thick half-moons; cut the onion into 1-inch pieces; and crush the garlic, stirring occasionally as you add the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in the eggplant and season the vegetables with the rosemary, thyme and bay leaf. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook, stirring often, until absorbed, 3 to 4 minutes; add the roasted peppers, then the tomatoes and their juices, crushing the tomatoes with your hands as you add them. Transfer to the oven and roast until the flavors meld and the vegetables are tender, 15 to 20 minutes. Drizzle with the EVOO and top with the reserved fennel fronds. Pass the crusty bread for mopping.