Ratatouille

Contributed by Preston Maring, MD


Ratatouille

This ratatouille recipe celebrates fall at the best fall has to offer. 

Cooking the vegetables in series rather than all together helps retain their individual contribution to the dish. 

Ratatouille keeps well refrigerated for several days and allegedly improves in flavor over time. 

It was so good, I didn't give it a chance to age.

Ingredients

  • 4 Japanese eggplants, skin left on, sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced
  • 4 bell peppers, mixed colors, cut into 1/4 inch strips
  • 4 mixed yellow and green squashes  — about 3/4 lb — sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 4 red and yellow tomatoes - about 1 pound, seeded and diced, juice discarded
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoon pitted green or Kalamata olives, chopped
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. 
  2. Salt and pepper the eggplant and toss with 3 tablespoons olive oil in a baking dish. Add water, cover, and bake for about 40 minutes or until soft to the touch. 
  3. Sauté the onions in olive oil until they start to brown. Add the peppers, season with salt and pepper, and cook until peppers and onions are well browned. Add the vinegar and cook for 1 minute. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. 
  4. Sauté the squash in olive oil until brown on both sides. Add to the pepper and onion mixture. 
  5. Discarding the liquid in the baking dish, add the eggplant to the other vegetables. 
  6. Return all to the sauté pan, add the tomatoes, bring to a simmer and cook for about 2 minutes. If it looks too juicy, pour off the excess liquid into another sauté pan, reduce it until thickened, and add it back to the vegetables. Allow it to cool. 
  7. Add the capers, olives, herbs, garlic, a little more red wine vinegar, and salt and pepper if needed.