Giambotta, is a familiar meal to almost everyone who grew up in an Italian-American household. And although my Italian-American peers tend to differ on our unique variations of its preparation, we certainly can agree on the fact that our collective families usually butchered the proper pronunciation of the word to sound something along the lines of, "Jom Boat". We can also agree that in most of our homes, the word "Giambotta" became synonymous with "clean out the fridge" day. In other words, whatever mom found lying about in any corner of the fridge - vegetable or otherwise - was tossed into a pot and referred to as "Jom Boat".
In my home, the meal usually began life with potatoes, tomatoes, onions, sausage, egg and a little tomato sauce. Today, the dish would probably be deemed a "deconstructed sausage/tomato omelet" by any restauranteur, but in truth, it was nothing more than an inexpensive, rustic meal that incorporated whatever my mother could scratch together to feed a family of five.
I'm offering this version of Giambotta, omitting the sausage, but in the spirit of my upbringing - utilizing whatever vegetables I had on hand. It can be served on a toasted ciabatta roll (as shown above) or lapped up with a crusty Italian bread.
So friends, toss away the measuring cup, dig through fridge and let's get cooking.
- 2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 bell peppers, roughly diced
- 1-2 zucchini or squash, diced
- 2 potatoes, roughly diced
- 4-5 plum tomatoes, diced
- 2 eggs
- 8-12 oz tomato sauce
- black pepper to taste
- pinch crushed red pepper
- olive oil
1. Heat a couple of teaspoons of olive oil in a deep, heavy pot and toss in minced garlic.
2. After a couple of minutes, toss in onions and season with salt and black pepper.
6. Season with a pinch of crushed red pepper, parsley and oregano, and re-season with salt & pepper.
8. Reduce heat to low and cook uncovered for 45 minutes or until most of the tomato sauce is absorbed (lower right).