Monday, October 1, 2007

Ratatouille for the Faint Hearted

Not being overly fond of eggplant, nonetheless I love the rest of the ingredients in ratatouille. So, one summer when I was awash in zucchinis and summer squash, I invented this colorful twist on that vegetable stew. I've always called it barbouille but I don't know why - when I Googled the name, I got a recipe for chicken. A puzzle.

Anyway, it's simplicity itself to make and really delicious as a side dish or as an entree.

Here's all you do:

4-5 small zucchinis (or one giant one that got away from you and turned into a baseball bat overnight), ends trimmed and cut into 1" chunks.
3-4 small yellow summer squashes, ends trimmed and cut into 1" chunks
1 large cooking onion, peeled and slice lengthwise to keep the layers attached to the root end
3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced or crushed
2 big shallots, peeled and sliced lengthwise like the onion
1 large red sweet pepper, cut into strips
1 small can tomato sauce
1 large or 3 small ripe tomatoes, skins removed
a generous splash of your favorite white wine, preferably dry
fresh or dried thyme and rosemary to taste, or fines herbes seasoning, or Herbes de Provence
olive oil

Soften the onion, garlic, pepper strips and shallot in a nice dollop of olive oil in a wide skillet. Set aside. In the same skillet, add a little more oil and saute' the squashes until they start to soften. Add back the onion mixture and add the rest of the ingredients and cook until the sauce is thickened to your liking and the flavors have melded, perhaps an hour - or less if you like firmer veggies. It's best if you serve it the next day but who can wait?


Blogger BuzzB said...

This was one of many highlights of yesterday's over the top lunch!

Monday, October 01, 2007  
Blogger Dagny said...

I must admit that for a long time, I was not an eggplant fan. I just thought they looked pretty. Once I have gotten past my current eggplant kick, I might have to give this a try.

Monday, October 01, 2007  
Blogger Zoomie said...

BuzzB, glad you liked it!

Dagny, I can recommend it, even if you _do_ like eggplant! :-)

Monday, October 01, 2007  

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