Wednesday, 12 March 2014


A friend needed a ratatouille recipe so I thought I'd do it here so I can share it again easily.

Ratatouille is a southern French vegetable stew. This is true peasant food, which means there is no single authoritative way to do it. Some people get very preachy about ingredients and methods, which I find rather silly. It's almost foolproof, you simply cook down the veggies until they are soft, it's probably the simplest thing you could make. You COULD just dump it all in a crockpot, it'd be perfectly edible. But it's better with a bit more care.

Here's how I do it, and the results are fantastic. Tweak to your heart's content.

I dice up equal parts of

Green Peppers
Red Peppers

And I fry them in a little olive oil, not too much (you don't want greasy veggies). You could grill them, or even bake them. You just want to brown them slightly, it brings out the flavour.

Then I add to this mixture enough diced/ground tomatoes (passata is fine, fresh is fine too, but do skin and core them first) to cover the rest of the veggies. You are looking for a stew texture.

Add as much garlic as you like, and herbs of your preference,  such as basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary etc, I prefer to use fresh, but you can use dried (just don't use dried basil, that stuff should be banned, buy a basil plant, or a jar of pesto if you have to). A little salt and pepper.

This can be cooked in a saucepan, crockpot, or casserole. It takes quite a long time on a low heat, so if you want it for dinner, start prepping after lunch.

I serve it with fresh bread, and with a bit of cheddar cheese or parmesan grated on top. Cheese is absolutely the best finishing touch for this dish BUT, it's optional so this is a perfect dish for Vegans and those trying to lose weight. You use up more calories making and eating it than you get from it (hence the bread, under normal circumstances).

It can be spiced up and made into a vegetable curry.

It can be used instead of tomato sauce in a lasagne (with or without meat)

It is amazing with fish.

It is endlessly adaptable and always good. You will love it. Children love it. It's fantastic.

And now I want some......