Prior to some months ago, my knowledge of ratatouille went about as far as the movie. After tasting a family member’s version for the first time, I was instantly hooked. The vegetables are the star of the show in this dish. The slow cooking process allows the veggies to release their natural sugars. Combined, the veggies create a wonderfully fragrant and nourishing meal, tasting completely different than they do on their own. I purposely use very little seasoning to let the flavors speak for themselves. A little salt, pepper, and basil do the trick. The ingredients are easily substitutable, though the bell peppers are a must in my book. Many traditional ratatouille recipes include eggplant, but I find zucchini lends a better bite and texture. By no means do I claim this dish is authentic, but it sure is delicious. I enjoy ratatouille served over rice or pasta, but my favorite way is with toasted Israeli couscous. Trust me on this--it is the most divine combo!
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, diced
- 3 Roma tomatoes, diced
- 2 bell peppers, chopped
- 2 medium zucchini, chopped
- 5 baby bella mushrooms, chopped
- Salt & pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
- Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add onions and cook until for several minutes until they develop some color. Add in garlic and cook for another minute, stirring occasionally.
- Add tomatoes to onion/garlic mixture and lower heat. Allow to simmer over low heat until tomatoes have cooked down and released juices. The mixture should resemble a loose sauce after about 15 to 20 minutes.
- Increase heat to medium. Stir in bell peppers, cooking for about 7 minutes, until softened.
- Stir in zucchini and cook about 7 more minutes. By this point, the veggies should be cooked down and bubbling in the tomato mixture.
- Lastly, add in mushrooms and cook several more minutes until they release their juices. Season ratatouille with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve with fresh basil for garnish and enjoy over rice, pasta, or on its own!