Beach is better with adults

Published 12:06 am Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Taking a vacation with grown children was so different from going with younger kids, and I have to say it was fabulous. I didn’t have to watch every move they made or make sure no one was too far out at the beach.

Best of all were our evening meals. We went out several nights, and everyone had a cocktail and visited while we waited for a table. No one screamed and cried about the wait, and I didn’t have to walk anyone outside or to “the bathroom.”

On other nights we split up the cooking and clean-up duties, and wow, did my kids do a good job.

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On mine and Emily’s night we prepared Mexican rice, chicken enchiladas, Mexican crab dip and margaritas.

Matthew and Lizzie took to the grill and prepared some delicious steaks with grilled asparagus and roasted potatoes. I love a grilled steak, and these were perfect.

Holly and Parker prepared a great meal of salad, roasted vegetables and lemon-dill chicken that was superb. I got the recipes from them so I could share one of them with you. Holly found it online through Pinterest so I cannot give original credit, but I’m definitely storing it in my recipe box.

This first dish has a fancy name for sliced and arranged roasted veggies. Not only was this dish delicious, it was a pretty dish, as the veggies are in a spiral in the dish with many alternating colors.


Vegetable Tian

2 tablespoons olive oil (divided)

1 large white onion cut in half and sliced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1-2 russet potatoes, unpeeled, scrubbed clean

1 zucchini, unpeeled

1 yellow squash, unpeeled

3 large Roma tomatoes

Sea salt

freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

Dried thyme, to taste

1/2 cup of grated Parmesan cheese


Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Coat a baking dish with olive oil cooking spray, this is easier to arrange if you use a round baking dish. I used a Pyrex pie plate. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and sauté until clear, not browned, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Spread the onion mixture on the bottom of the greased baking dish.

Slice the potatoes, zucchini, squash and tomatoes into 1/4 inch thick slices. Layer them alternately in the dish on top of the onions, fitting them tightly into a spiral, making only one layer. Holly overlapped hers but made them stand up a little on their side, it kept their colors showing and made for a beautiful dish. Season with sea salt, black pepper and dried thyme, to taste and drizzle the last tablespoon of olive oil over the top.

Cover the dish with tin foil and bake for 35 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Uncover and sprinkle the Parmesan cheese on top and bake for another 25-30 minutes or until browned.


Christina Hall writes a weekly food column for The Democrat. She can be reached at