Ratatouille

ratatouille

Traditional ratatouille is a thick, hearty and colorful stew-like mass that sticks to your ribs and warms you throughout. Hard to believe it's nothing but vegetables and a bit of cheese. It certainly is peasant food, but peasant food fit for a king.

This is my recipe for ratatouille and we like it very much at room temperature with a baguette or served with a simple sautéed chicken breast. See the Ingredients Tips below for some pointers on picking the best vegetables for this dish.

Hands-On Time: 10 minutes
Ready In: 30 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

    1 medium onion, peeled and diced
    1 clove garlic, minced
    3 T olive oil
    1 small eggplant cubed
    1 medium zucchini cubed
    1 medium green pepper seeded and diced
    2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
    1 t each fresh basil and oregano, minced
    1 t salt
    1 T parsley chopped
    1/3 c Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

Directions

  1. In a large skillet cook onion and garlic in olive oil until onion is translucent.
  2. Add remaining ingredients except cheese and stir well.
  3. Cook on low, stirring once in awhile, about 30 minutes until tender and liquid has evaporated.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in cheese. Serve warm or cold or anywhere in between.

Ingredients Tip: Zucchini can be bitter and there's no real way to know ahead of time if it will be or not, but, in general, the smaller and shinier zucchini tend to be OK as well as commercially grown zucchini that have been grown under controlled conditions. Eggplant can also be bitter and smaller, shinier fruits are the best bet here, too. If the eggplant is still bitter, cube it and toss into a colander. Salt it liberally and let sit for an hour or two to drain. Press it well with a towel to remove excess liquid before cooking.

See more recipes from Anne Coleman (aka Short Order Mom).

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