There are probably over 100 recipes for Ratatouille…and I believe I have tried at least half that many! This is my go-to version. I make it often; its good hot or cold, topped on pasta or pizza, wrapped in crepes, as a side dish or main meal. Blended with some vegetable stock and a splash of non-dairy milk, you can make a gorgeous creamy vegetable soup.
Looking back at this recipe from 2010, there is not much to change as I convert my blog into plant based. Other than previously grating “cheese” over the dish, the recipe still holds true for my lifestyle today.
1 tablespoons olive oil – or eliminate any oil by using water/vegetable broth sauté only
1 medium onion, chopped
2 sweet peppers, red, yellow or orange, diced
2 medium zucchini, cubed
1 large eggplant, peeled and cubed
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes with juices
1/4 cup red wine (optional)
1/4 cup vegetable broth (or use 1/2 cup if not using the red wine)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Chopped fresh basil (optional, but good to sprinkle on at the end)
In a very large pan, heat the olive oil or add a tablespoon of water to a heated pan. Add the onions and sauté till soft. Add the peppers and continue to cook until peppers begin to soften and brown. Add in the zucchini and brown slightly. Next add in the chopped eggplant, garlic, diced tomatoes, wine, broth and seasonings. Stir to combine well. Cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally, for approximately 40 minutes until it becomes the consistency you would like. Add chopped fresh basil at the end to freshen up the taste.
Cooking notes: In making the Ratatouille in this method, the onions, peppers and zucchini begin to brown. Eggplant can use and soak up a lot of oil when attempting to brown it; therefore, I add it with the tomato sauce allowing it to simmer and soften in the liquids. At first it will appear that your pan is overflowing; however, allow the ingredients to cook and blend together. A 15 oz. can of diced tomatoes will flavor it well; at times I have used a 28 oz. can of tomatoes creating more tomato sauce for topping pasta. You can vary the recipe by the size of the cubes you cut from the veggies. Try to maintain a consistency in size; smaller cuts for use in fillings and larger for topping on pizza, pasta, or as a main dish. The ratatouille makes about 8 cups depending on the size of the vegetables you are using. Keeps refrigerated for several days.
I love being in the kitchen. Early mornings, soft music, a hot espresso. Easing into the preparation of delicious meals. Glancing through cookbooks, gathering inspiration and planning my day. I look forward to the cycles of the seasons, the pleasures of tasting and savoring and sharing this with those dear to me. Weekends are special to me as my week days are often rushed, but still I create the ambiance, light the candles, set the table and uncork the wine.