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The Perfect Ratatouille

The Perfect Ratatouille

Some of the best things in life are simple pleasures that come from fresh ingredients, cooked lovingly to nourish the ones you care about. Ratatouille is a staple in my home, I vary the ingredients ever so slightly based on what’s in season and what tastes good from my greengrocer. A must is always tomato — lots and lots of it as well as zucchini that mingles perfectly when slowly simmering.

What’s great about it:

Technically a fruit, tomatoes are loved around the world for their versatility, rich red colour and flavour. Tomatoes are a wonderful source of vitamin B6, C, K, beta-carotene, potassium and manganese. The lycopene (phytonutrient) in tomatoes has been linked to lower rates of heart disease and cancer. Zucchini are a good source of B-group vitamins, which are essential for energy metabolism. The vitamin C, beta-carotene and phytonutrients, give zucchini’s their antioxidant properties. Capsicums are available in a range of vibrant colours, which all contain the natural painkiller capsaicin, clinically proven to be useful against arthritic pain.

+ ingredients & methods +

ingredients (4)

1 red onion, chopped
a good splash of olive oil
4 zucchini (small – medium) cut into rounds
2 red capsicum, roughly chopped
1 eggplant, medium sized, chopped
1.2  kg ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped
handful fresh chopped parsley or basil
sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
Gruyere Cheese –  grated to serve

 

method

  1. Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil into a large frying pan over a low heat.
  2. Add the onion and sauté lightly until softened.
  3. Add zucchini, capsicum, eggplant and tomato and mix through.
  4. Add about 1/2 cup of water and cover, simmering over a lowish heat until the tomato starts to collapse and mingle into a delicious sauce.
  5. Simmer for about 45 – 50  minutes…this is normally enough time.
  6. Remove the lid from the pan and stir through gently.
  7. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. Add freshly chopped herbs or torn basil right at the very end.
  9. Serve in generous bowls topped with a little Gruyere and enjoy.
+ notes & inspiration +
  • I love the fact that a simple meal of ratatouille can just be enjoyed on its own, spooned into bowls and topped with freshly chopped herbs and a little Gruyere.
  • You can also enjoy it cold, folded through quality tinned tuna and baby spinach leaves.  Ideas are endless…Enjoy.

 

  • Instead of grated Gruyere – top with Brazil Nut Parmesan. 
  • Add a few handfuls of shredded kale whilst simmering.
  • I often serve this for a Sunday brunch – Just crack in a few organic eggs 8 minutes before serving, cover and gently simmer until the eggs are just cooked, but still runny inside.
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