Preparation time: 3 hours
- 1 lb of yellow onions, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 lb zucchini, chopped
- 1 lb yellow squash, chopped
- Bell peppers, seeds removed, chopped into 1/2 inch square pieces:
- --1 lb green bell peppers
- --1/2 lb red bell peppers
- --1/2 lb yellow bell peppers
- 1 lb eggplant, 1/2 inch cubes
- 1 (14 1/2oz) can of good quality diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Salt to taste
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1-inch sprig rosemary
- 3/4 cup white wine, vegetable broth or tomato sauce
- Fresh ground pepper to taste
Method1 Preheat oven to 250° F.
2 Using a large oven-proof pan over medium high heat, sauté onions in olive oil until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and reduce heat to low.
3 While the onions and garlic are cooking over low heat, put 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a another frying pan over high heat. As soon as oil starts to smoke, quickly add enough zucchini cubes all at once to cover the bottom of the pan. Keep on cooking over high heat, stirring, until zucchini is lightly browned on all sides. Remove zucchini cubes, and add them to pan with the onions.
4 Working in batches, repeat this process until all of the zucchini cubes have been cooked. Do the same with the yellow squash. Make sure to add a little olive oil between each new batch. Continue with the bell peppers, then the eggplant cubes, adding the browned vegetables to the onion pan as soon as they are cooked.
5 When all the vegetables (except the tomatoes) are browned and in the pan with the onions, increase the heat to high and stir, making sure they don't stick to the bottom of the pan. Add salt to taste, thyme, bay leaf, and rosemary, the vegetable stock, and stir well. Place in oven, uncovered, for 2 hours, stirring occassionally.
6 Add the chopped tomatoes and cover. If serving as a warm side dish, let the ratatouille stand for 10 minutes, just enough to "cook" the tomatoes. The ratatouille can be served at room temperature or refrigerated and reheated the next day.
7 When ready to serve, remove the bay leaf, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
I like to serve this with Creamy Polenta....