One of my family’s all-time favorite “winter” dishes that we end up making year round is my grandma Ellen’s eggplant and zucchini ratatouille. This dish is something that I grew up eating, and I finally think that over this past winter break, I have found a perfect medium between her version, and my own version of the dish.
Here’s what you’ll need:
3 medium sized eggplants
4 cloves garlic
2 cans crushed, diced tomatoes (any brand works, just make sure you do not buy whole tomatoes because I have done that by accident before and I kid you not I spent 30 minutes crushing wet, soggy tomatoes into a pot–not a mistake you need to make)
1 small can tomato puree
3 tablespoons dried oregano
2 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes (I like it spicy, so I always end up putting more in than usual, but if you cannot handle the spice, just do a half a tablespoon)
Salt and pepper to taste
Here’s what you’ll do
Peel the eggplant with a knife, cutting the skin off but avoiding taking off the actual flesh of the eggplant itself (May sound a little difficult at first, but just be gentle with the knife, and make sure your knife is sharp and polished)
Chop the eggplant and zucchini into medium sized chunks–does not have to be perfect because it’s all going into one pot
Chop the garlic and onions
Now here’s the difficult part: dump all of the veggies into the pot with the rest of the other ingredients, stir well, and put on high until the mixture begins to boil. After that, reduce it to simmer, pop a lid on that bad boy, and let it go as long as you possibly can. I know, difficult right?
Personally, I think that the more the ratatouille cooks the better, but you’ll be set with just and hour or two if you are impatient like most of my family. Also, remember to check the pot every 20 minutes or so to stir the mixture and prevent it from burning on the bottom.
**Great over some brown rice with a sprinkle of cheese, or just with a big bowl and a spoon**