Italian Summer Vegetable Casserole
From a Chef's Kitchen
Italian Summer Vegetable Casserole is the best of summer produce in a beautiful Mediterranean-inspired dish with grilled vegetables, marinara and cheese!
- 1 medium eggplant (sliced 1/4-inch thick)
- 2 small to medium yellow squash (sliced 1/4-inch thick)
- 2 medium zucchini (sliced 1/4-inch thick)
- 1 large red bell pepper (seeded, stem and core removed, cut into approximately 12 long strips)
- 1 large yellow bell pepper (seeded, stem and core removed, cut into approximately 12 long strips)
- ¼ cup olive oil (plus 2 tablespoons)
- salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
- cooking spray
- 1 jar (24-ounce) marinara sauce such as Bertolli Olive Oil and Garlic
- 2 large sprigs fresh basil (leaves torn)
- 3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ cup panko
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Preheat a grill to medium-high. Lightly brush vegetables with 1/4 cup olive oil. Place vegetables on the grill, reduce heat to medium. Cook vegetable until nicely marked and slightly softened, except for eggplant. Cook eggplant until easily pierced with a knife.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Spread approximately 1/2 cup marinara sauce over the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
- Place zucchini over the sauce to cover the bottom, then top with 1/2 cup of the marinara and sprinkle with approximately 1/2 cup of the Mozzarella, a sprinkling of Parmesan and some torn basil. Top with red bell pepper.
- Top with remaining zucchini and yellow squash, 1/2 cup sauce, 1/2 cup Mozzarella, more Parmesan and more torn basil.
- Top with yellow bell pepper then eggplant.
- Pour remaining marinara sauce over the casserole. Top with remaining Mozzarella and more Parmesan, leaving approximately 1/4 cup for the topping.
- Combine remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan, panko, parsley and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the top of the casserole.
- Bake for 45 minutes or until bubbling and topping is lightly browned.