An Abundance of Summer Produce: Ratatouille

Remember that bunch of lovely veggies from my CSA share last week? With the zucchini, eggplant, some onions, and some tomatoes, basil and parsley from my garden, I made ratatouille. I realize I’m probably late to the ratatouille party – from what I can recall, it seemed that everyone made this dish back when the movie debuted. I never tried it before (that I can remember, anyway), and I wanted to see what it was like. While I typically lean towards fast and fresh veggie recipes in the summer months, I just knew this was something I wanted to take the time to try.

Boy, was I glad I did. What a burst of flavors! The long simmering time didn’t lessen the freshness factor either – with the fresh basil garnishing the dish, it seemed like every bite was summer. Leftovers reheated beautifully too – I enjoyed some for breakfast (yes, breakfast!) with scrambled eggs the next morning. It was a dish that seemed rich in flavor, but pretty light in calories. I am hoping to see more eggplant and zucchini in my future, so I have an excuse to make this dish a few more times before summer is over. Next time you want a superstar side dish, this is a sure winner. I enjoyed it with some lamb chops, and while I adored the lamb, the ratatouille pretty much stole the show.

Ratatouille, adapted from Gourmet magazine

1 lb tomatoes

4 large garlic cloves, sliced

1/2 c chopped fresh parsley

10 fresh basil leaves, torn, plus more for garnish

3-4 T olive oil

1 lb eggplant, cut into 1-inch pieces

salt

1 large onion, sliced

1 red and 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces

2 lbs zucchini, cut into 1-inch pieces

black pepper

If using large red tomatoes, cut an X on the bottom of each tomato, and drop into a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and allow cool. Peel, and chop. (If using yellow pear tomatoes, cherry, or grape tomatoes, you can skip this step.)

Add tomatoes along with garlic,parsley,  basil, and 1 tablespoon of oil in a large saucepan. Simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes break down and start to make a sauce (about 30 minutes).

While sauce is simmering, toss eggplant with about 1/4 teaspoon of salt in a colander and allow to sit in sink for 30 minutes.

Cook onions and peppers in 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 10-12 minutes. Season with a bit of salt. Add to the tomato-garlic mixture. Add more oil if you need it to the skillet, and cook eggplant for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the zucchini and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-7 minutes. Season with a bit of salt and add this to the other ingredients in the saucepan. Season with pepper to taste and simmer, stirring occasionally, covered, for an hour, or until vegetables are very tender. Adjust seasoning to taste, and serve garnished with a touch of basil.

Serves 4.

23 Comments

Filed under Budget-Friendly, Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Healthy Meals, Side Dishes, Vegetables, Vegetarian

23 responses to “An Abundance of Summer Produce: Ratatouille

  1. anyway you cook it Ratatouille is a great use of vegetables! Thanks for sharing your version!
    cheers
    Dennis

  2. I’ve never tried to make this but I love to eat it- looks great!

  3. I’ve never made Ratatouille myself, but I love it. Thanks for sharing your recipe Alta!

  4. I love this dish and yours looks great. When our produce comes in come July, this will be a”must do.”

  5. Great use of the CSA! Fresh fresh fresh.

  6. Looks beautiful with all the colors, and you can never go wrong with ratatouille. 🙂 Good way to use the CSA veggies!

  7. This sounds so fresh and delicious, Hey I eat stuff like this for breakfast, too!

  8. I never like eggplant until this year when I tried baba ganoush for the first time. It made me experiment with it in other ways too. My next experiment was an eggplant gratin, Which turned out awesome too.

    Your ratatouille looks beautiful. I’ll have to make it my next version of eggplant to try.

  9. What a fabulous photo, Alta! My hubby loves eggplant. I like all the ingredients and I love that it’s a stovetop recipe … much better for summer. 🙂 I really need to make this one some time. Thanks so much for your recipe!

    Shirley

  10. What a great looking veggie dish! I’m considering to sign up for a CSA program in my city but haven’t got a chance to do it. I envy your herb garden! I just started planting basil; will see how long it will last. I’m so not a green thump person.

    This dish is so healthy with a bunch of vegetable.

  11. amy

    I love the way this looks…so good. can’t wait to try!
    amy

  12. Wow, this dish looks so fresh and perfect for summer!

  13. Movie or not you don’t need Remy to enjoy a great ratatouille. This is a favorite around our house.

  14. You’re making me salivate. This would be wonderful for breakfast, with a side of eggs.

  15. s

    Lovely spread, and beautiful clicks. Nice to be here. Best wishes.

  16. You’ve made such a lovely version of the dish here, Alta, and many thanks to you for sharing it. I’m totally gaga over ratatouille and can hardly restrain myself from making it every day. Breakfast, lunch, snack, or dinner. I’m game for it any time.

  17. I love tasty dishes as easy yet so tasty as this one!!

    Lovely summer’s food!

  18. Truly perfect dish for summer veggies. I should try a baked salad version, perfect with lamb chops……like you did!

  19. I just made ratatouille over the weekend with my CSA share – we didn’t get one last week because I was in NYC. I **love** that I have leftovers for days and days.

  20. What a wonderful dish! I love the recipe and your excitment for making it. I too have a basket full of veggies that need a home. Thanks for the idea 🙂

  21. Pingback: Cherry Upside-Down Cake & “Grab Bag” | gfe--gluten free easily

  22. Pingback: Top Tasty Eats in 2010 « Tasty Eats At Home

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