Friday, May 31, 2013
We got all the ingredients we needed for Ratatouille except for the yellow squash and red bell pepper in our bountiful basket this past week. I've been wanting to try this for years now and finally we did! It was really yummy and Cameron even liked it (he's not a squash or tomato fan). Give it a try!
I got my recipe from http://www.thecomfortofcooking.com/2010/08/layered-ratatouille.html but I modified it slightly. Here's what I did:
1/2 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, very thinly sliced (I'd never sliced garlic before, but it's not hard)
1 cup tomato puree (this was about 5 roma tomatoes worth chopped up in my mini food processor)
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 TBS olive oil divided (I discovered we're out of olive oil...so I just used my olive oil cooking spray and it worked fine)
1 small eggplant (the one we had was kinda fat...this'll work better if you have a longer/skinnier one)
1 yellow squash
1 long red bell pepper (I goofed and got a green one at the store, but it worked fine)
Thyme (the original recipe called for fresh...we were all out of fresh so I used dried)
Salt and Pepper
Queso Fresco, Parmesan, or some other cheese (the recipe called for crumbled goat cheese, we used the two I just listed)
1 roma tomato, sliced (this wasn't in the recipe, but I had 1 tomato left and I thought it'd add color...since I didn't have a red bell pepper)
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees
2. Spread your tomato puree in a baking dish that is around 10 inches long. Mine was a little shorter, but we made it work. Spread the garlic and onion around in the sauce evenly (I laid mine on top and then used a wooden spoon to push it down in the sauce) and then sprinkle on the oregano, crushed red pepper, 1 TBS olive oil, and salt and pepper.
3. Slice the eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash and bell pepper (cutting off the ends and coring the pepper of course). Leave all the skins on! Slices should be approximately 1/16-inch thick. Pretty much to me that meant as thin as I could get them (since I don't have a fancy slicer that measures for me).
4. Layer the slices of veggies (eggplant, squash, pepper, then zucchini, or whatever order you want to maximize the color combo) starting at the outer edge and overlapping them so that just a small edge of each surface shows behind the next. Spiral them all the way around the edge and to the middle of the pan.
5. Drizzle/spray the veggies with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle a small amount of thyme over the veggies.
6. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit in the edge of the dish and place on top of the veggies. I wasn't careful with how I cut it and it was a little small. I think that's why my pan was so dirty on the edges.
7. Bake for 40-55 minutes (until the veggies have released their liquids and are cooked all the way through, but not until they are completely limp and lifeless). The tomato sauce should be bubbling and the veggies should NOT be brown (mine were a little overcooked, but still tasty).
8. Serve with cheese of choice on top. This can be eaten with crusty bread, on top of rice or couscous, or plain (we did plain and it was great).