In the summer, you don’t just want something light to eat. You want it to cook before your kitchen gets all heated up. Ratatouille cooks in 20-30 minutes on top of the stove, and it’s easy to make in the microwave too. (The vegetable pictured are raw.)
The other day I made this recipe from the last of the vegetables in the refrigerator. I served it with cooked potatoes and cottage cheese, because I needed to use them up, but I would have preferred rice or bulgur wheat to soak up the sauce. Lentils with eggplant and garlic could finished up the meal, but a can of tuna would work well too.
The recipe is quite flexible, so feel free to skip a particular vegetable. Expect it to shrink a lot.
Summer Tomato-Eggplant Ratatouille
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 onion, chopped or sliced
- 1-2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1 pepper, any color, seeded and chopped
- 5-6 mushrooms, any type, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 zucchini, chopped
- 1 small eggplant, chopped. Peel if you like. I also skip the salting and draining recommended by many cooks.
- 6 ripe chopped tomatoes or 1 can crushed tomatoes
- Sprig rosemary (or other fresh or dried herb like oregano, basil or parsley)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large saucepan, saute the onions in the oil for 5 minutes.
- Add the celery, pepper and mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, for another ten minutes.
- Add the other ingredients. When the liquid comes to a boil (it may be hard to see), lower the gas and cover the pot.
- Stir occasionally so that the vegetables cook evenly.
- The ratatouille is done when the eggplant is fully cooked. This will take another 10 to 20 minutes, depending on their size. If the eggplant is ready before the other vegetables, you can still eat the ratatouille but it depends on your preference.
Serve with a good bread, grains or pasta, or eat it straight. Good hot or cold, it will keep for several days in the refrigerator.
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