Vegetable Heaven From Italy Is Called Gianfottere

One of the grand dishes of southern Italy is a baked vegetable medley called gianfottere. There is a summer version and a winter version. It can be eaten from the vessel it’s cooked in hot, warm, or at room temperature. This recipe is a preparation for the summer version of verdure al forno, mixed oven-baked vegetables, for which there are many variations depending on seasonality in Campania, Calabria, and Basilicata. In Campania, it is generally known as gianfottere and in other regions its spelling changes variously. The secret to this dish is fresh vegetables, and if you can also use young heirloom-type vegetables, all the better. Although I provide some examples of various vegetable cultivars in the list of ingredients you can make do with whatever is locally available. The baking process slowly causes the vegetables to emit their natural sugars and the whole dish is quite heavenly. If you wish to serve it as a side dish it is nice with a golden roasted chicken.

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Vegetable
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil or to taste
  • ½ pound baby carrots (about 8), peeled, trimmed slightly, leaving on a bit of their stem
  • ¾ pound fingerling potatoes (about 4) or new Yukon Gold potatoes about the size of a golf ball, halved
  • 3 small red onions (about 1 pound), trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
  • 5 young summer (yellow) squash (about 1 pound), split in half lengthwise
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • Pinch of saffron crumbled in a mortar with ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • ¾ pound ripe Big Boy tomatoes (or similar), sliced
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Lightly oil a 9 x 12-inch or similarly sized baking casserole. Arrange the carrots, potatoes, onions, and squash in the pan. Season with salt and pepper, and the garlic, basil, oregano, saffron, salt, and sugar. Stuff the rosemary sprigs in between the vegetables. Lay the tomatoes on top and season again with salt and pepper. Pour the remaining olive oil over the vegetables or oil to taste.
  3. Bake until the tomatoes look like they have melted and the potato and carrot can be pierced easily by a skewer but are not breaking apart, about 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hours. Serve warm or at room temperature.



  1. David E Richey says

    excellent recipe

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