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Tuesday 21 June 2011

Sluttishly Vegan: Ultimate Ratatouille

Ratatouille is one of those simple comfort foods that's also amazingly healthy and packed with veggies. It may not look glamorous, but it's a stew I make time and time again.

I learned to dry roast the vegetables from Sarah Leahy Benjamin at Divertimenti. It may seem like a faff, but it really makes a difference. The dried out veggies soak up all those lovely tomato juices and it helps the flavours to blend to perfection. The addition of marmalade also helps boost the tomatoeyness, but you could use a tablespoon of sugar or honey if you don't fancy a hint of orange. The herbes de provence mix contains several herbs including lavender and gives it an authentic provencal flavour. If you can't get it though, just bung in some dried sage, thyme or rosemary.

Ultimate Ratatouille (serves 4 as a side dish)

You'll need:

  • 1 aubergine, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 courgettes, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 pepper, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • A glug of wine or brandy
  • 1 400g tin of tomatoes
  • A handful of fresh cherry tomatoes, halved (optional)
  • 1tbsp marmalade
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Dried herbs - I use herbes de provence but you can use sage, thyme, rosemary, etc
Make it!
  • Preheat the oven to 150c / Gas 3.
  • Put the aubergine, courgette and pepper on separate trays and season generously with salt and pepper. Don't add oil or it'll make the ratatouille greasy. Put them into the oven for 20-40 minutes until they're going golden and have dried out nicely.
  • Meanwhile, fry the onion and garlic in olive oil until it is soft but not coloured.
  • Turn up the heat and add the brandy or wine. Bubble it away until it has almost disappeared.
  • Stir in the cherry tomatoes, if using, and tinned tomatoes.
  • Once the vegetables in the oven have finished cooking, stir them into the tomato mixture with the marmalade, bay leaf and dried herbs. If there isn't enough liquid to cover them all, top it up with water.
  • Let the mixture bubble away for twenty minutes.
  • Serve with crusty bread or as a side vegetable (and don't forget to take out the bay leaf). It's also great reheated the next day and freezes well too.

1 comment:

  1. I have just made this and it is absolutely delicious.


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