Ratatouille

Category: 
Main Courses
Seasons: 
June, July, August

Courtesy of Chef Alain Braux

"This wonderful dish is the essence of Provence. The best time to prepare it is in summer when the tomatoes are full of flavor. If you still want to prepare it at other times, I recommend using Muir Glen Organics crushed tomatoes with basil. I know, it’s a sacrilege but it helps you savor this dish at all times. You can savor ratatouille as a main dish, soup, side dish with a nice fish or as a great pizza topping. Here’s the version Helene, my mother-in-law, taught me. Enjoy!"

Chef’s tips: This can be a satisfying dish by itself, eaten warm or at room temperature. The flavors seem to bloom better at these temperatures than when hot. It also is a wonderful side dish with a sautéed filet of white fish. Another trick I learned from Helene, my mother in law, is to prepare or buy a par-baked pizza crust and top it off with ratatouille mixed with one beaten egg and bake. The ratatouille tends to be runny so the egg holds it together. Sprinkle your favorite grated cheese on top: Romano, parmesan, Swiss and enjoy!

Easy

Ratatouille

Ingredients

For 4 Person(s)

Cream

  • 1 medium white onion, peeled and cut in half moons
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small green bell pepper, cut in thin slices
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cut in thin slices
  • 4 ounces vegetable broth
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 small eggplants, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 medium zucchini, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 large very ripe tomatoes
  • 3 ounces tomato paste (skip if you use ripe fresh tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cups red wine (the secret ingredient)
  • 1 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped fine
  • 1 tablespoons Herbes de Provence blend
  • 1 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Ratatouille Directions

  1. Peel and chop onions and garlic. Toss together in a bowl and let sit for 5 min. 
  2. Cut green and red bell peppers, take the seeds out, cut into four sections and slice thin. 
  3. In a large skillet or pot, heat the vegetable broth and olive oil over medium-high heat; sauté the onions, garlic and bell peppers for 5 minutes, or until tender. 
  4. Add the eggplant, zucchini and tomatoes; mix well and cook for another 10 more minutes until they start to soften. 
  5. In a separate bowl, mix the tomato paste and red wine together. Stir in the parsley, basil, Herbes de Provence, salt and pepper. 
  6. Add this flavorful mix to the vegetables, stir well. Lower the heat to simmer and continue to cook one more hour until all the vegetables are melted like a stew or thick soup. 
  7. Serve in white porcelain bowls to show off the ratatouille’s bright colors (remember, we eat as much with our eyes as with our mouth) and sprinkle with a few fresh parsley leaves.

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