Trying to get more vegetables into your daily diet? Briami takes advantage of the fresh vegetables you love most and turns them into a satisfying side dish or main dish depending on what you are in the mood for. Served hot out of the oven or at room temperature they are equally as delicious!
Everyone knows how important it is to eat more fruits and vegetables. The USDA recommends 5-9 portions of fruits and vegetables daily. Doing this will help reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Eating a balanced diet that includes fruits and vegetables can also reduce cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
The Greek diet is known as one of the healthiest in the world because it includes lots of fresh vegetables. Sweet summer vegetables! Summertime brings large amounts of fresh vegetables that include zucchini, eggplant and tomatoes. What we love about Briami is that it comes out a little different every time you make it depending on what vegetables you are able to find in season and what herbs you add. Traditional Briami includes eggplant, but as hard as we tried, we did not find eggplant at the Farmers Market or at the grocery store the day we made this. It seemed odd given it’s summer.
Odd that is, until I started reflecting on my childhood and not being a fan of eggplant. In fact, I disliked it so much as a child and refused to eat it, that I remember my mother chasing me around the dinner table with a wooden spoon. Well mom, this one is for you! Briami without eggplant!
So the key for this dish is quite simple…fresh vegetables. The rest is just as easy as the preparation time is quick. What results is a healthy and flavorful side dish or a main dish if you choose. Enjoy it with some crusty artisan bread to sop up all the delicious tomato and olive oil juices flavored with garlic. This is also a dish that tastes even better the next day.
By the way, if you are lucky enough to find eggplant, we encourage you to add it to this dish. The rich, deep flavors of the eggplant make this dish even better. And yes, I do like eggplant now!
HOW TO MAKE BRIAMI
- Wash vegetables well. Cut vegetables into 1-1 1/2 inch pieces as evenly as possible so that they cook evenly. Add vegetables to a large mixing bowl.
- Then add fresh chopped parsley and salt to taste.
- Put in pepper to taste.
- Pour extra virgin olive oil over vegetable mixture. Use hands to cover all vegetables well with parsley, olive oil, salt and pepper.
- Transfer vegetables into a large baking pan and spread out evenly. Add 1 tablespoon of tomato paste to 3/4 cup of water and mix well to break down the tomato paste. Pour into the corner of the pan so that the water-tomato mixture fills the pan but not directly over the vegetable mixture. Place pan in preheated oven and cook for 45-60 minutes depending on how done you prefer your vegetables. Turn vegetables every 15-20 minutes so that they cook evenly. Add additional water if needed.
- Finished Briami.
CAN I USE DIFFERENT VEGETABLES TO MAKE BRIAMI?
Traditional Briami includes eggplant, zucchini, onions, tomatoes and potatoes. We have mixed it up a bit by adding carrots and leaving out the eggplant. Make Briami the traditional way or switch out with other vegetables you prefer.
CAN I ADD DIFFERENT HERBS?
You can add a blend of fresh or dried mint, rosemary, basil, dill or oregano to the Briami. It’s depends upon your personal preference. We encourage you to play around and find a blend that works for you.
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- 2 zucchini
- 2 yellow squash
- 2 red bell peppers
- 2 carrots, large
- 2 tomatoes, large vine ripe or heirloom
- 2 potatoes, large
- 2 red onions, large
- 6 garlic cloves, large
- 1 bunch fresh parsley
- 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- Preheat oven to 400° F
- Wash vegetables well. Cut zucchini, yellow squash, red bell pepper, carrots, tomatoes, potatoes and red onions into 1-1 1/2 inch pieces as evenly as possible so that they cook evenly. Peel garlic cloves and leave whole. Add vegetables and garlic cloves to a large mixing bowl.
- Finely chop fresh parsley and add to vegetable mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Pour extra virgin olive oil over vegetable mixture. Use hands to cover all vegetables well with olive oil.
- Pour vegetables into a large baking pan and spread out evenly.
- Add 1 tablespoon of tomato paste to 3/4 cup of water and mix well to break down the tomato paste. Pour into the corner of the pan so that the water-tomato mixture fills the pan but not directly over the vegetable mixture.
- Add pan to preheated oven and cook for 45-60 minutes depending on how done you prefer your vegetables. Turn vegetables every 15-20 minutes so that they cook evenly. Add additional water if needed.
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