Tomato Courgette Bake with Pine Nut Crumb Topping

The weather has taken a turn for the worse here and there is a autumn bite in the air. So gone are the lazy summer sundays in the garden and bake are the lazy sundays indoors cooking warming foods and keeping warm by the oven in the process.

First up I roasted some beetroot that needed using up. These sweet little chunks are great thrown into a salad or just as a snack when you are craving something sweet.

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I also had a courgette that needed using up, aswell as a giant basil plant that I had barely touched. That’s why I decided to make a simple Tomato Courgette Bake. The pine nut crumb was an afterthought but really added something special to the dish.

Here’s how I did it…

1 medium Courgette
1 carton Chopped Tomatoes
Tomato Puree
1 Garlic Clove
Salt and Pepper
Small handful of Fresh Basil

2 tbsp Pine Nuts, lightly toasted
A pinch of Dried Oregano, Dried Basil, Cayenne Pepper, Salt & Pepper
2 tbsp finely grated Lactose or Dairy Free Cheese

Finely slice the courgette and do a single layer in a medium sized baking dish or 2 smaller ones. These can be pregrilled if you like but I put mine in raw and slow cooked the dish.

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Again, you can precook the tomatoes with the puree and crushed garlic but you don’t have to. Just make sure you add the shredded basil before you put in the oven. Layer the courgette with the sauce in a medium low oven for 30-40 minutes.

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Meanwhile you can make the crumb. Chop or pound the nuts with the seasonings until a crumb like texture is reached. It is nice to have some chunkier nuts for texture too. Mix in the cheese and set aside.

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I sprinkled this over the bakes and cooked for a further 5-10 minutes until the cheese melted and the crumb crisped up a bit. You could use breadcrumbs; I just didn’t have any in.

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