Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a Mediterranean vegetable stew from the southern region of Provence in France. The secret to a perfect ratatouille is sun-ripened vegetables, good quality olive oil with a rich and robust flavor and plenty of time.

 

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Ratatouille is one of those dishes that tastes even better on the next day. Serve it warm or cold with crispy bread.

Ratatouille

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1kg / 2.2 lb of sun-ripened tomatoes
  • 1 large onion
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper
  • sugar
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 2 red bell peppers
  • 3 zucchini
  • 2 large eggplants
  • olive oil
  • Italian (flat leaf) parsley
  • basil

Preparation

  1. Rinse the tomatoes and, using a knife, carve a cross at the top and the bottom of each tomato. Put the tomatoes in a large bowl and pour boiling hot water over them (the tomatoes should be completely covered with water) Set aside for a few minutes until the skin starts to peel off, then drain, peel and dice the tomatoes removing the stems and collecting the juice.

  2. Peel and finely dice onion and garlic. In a large pan heat up 2 tablespoons of olive oil and sauté the onions and one-third of the garlic. Stir in the tomatoes together with all the juice they released, add bay leaf and season with salt and pepper. Let the tomatoes simmer on low heat for about 40 minutes and keep stirring so that as much liquid as possible evaporates and a thick, creamy sauce is produced. Depending on the acidity of the tomatoes, season the sauce with a little bit of sugar at the end of the cooking time.

  3. Meanwhile cut the peppers in half, clean and wash them and cut into pieces about 4cm in size. Wash the zucchini, quarter them and cut the quarters into 1 cm thick slices. Wash, clean and quarter the eggplants, and cut them into pieces about 3cm thick.

  4. In a second pan (personally, I prefer to use a cast iron pan for this part) heat up 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Roast half of the eggplants over medium heat until golden brown. Add some of the remaining garlic, season with salt and pepper. Add 2 – 4 tablespoons of water, stir and let it simmer (this way you continue cooking the eggplants without adding more oil). Continue to roast the eggplants until well cooked, stirring from time to time, then remove from the pan onto a plate or into a bowl. Roast the remaining eggplants in the same way. For the zucchini and peppers heat up about 4 tbsps of olive oil and roast the vegetables until slightly browned while stirring. Add the remaining garlic, season with salt and pepper.

  5. Combine all the vegetables and any juice they may have released into the cooked tomato sauce and let simmer over a low heat for another 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper. Wash the parsley and basil, shake dry, pluck off the leaves, chop finely and mix with the ratatouille. Serve warm or cold with crispy white bread.

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