While concentric circles of thinly sliced eggplant, zucchini, onion and tomato may look pretty, I’m all about keeping this classic French dish true to its form. Ratatoiulle is a rustic, stove-top stewed vegetable dish that originated in Nice, France. It is packed full of delicious Mediterranean vegetables and is fantastic served either warm or cold. Not only does this dish taste delicious, it just so happens to be 100% vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free.
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cook Time: 60 minutes | Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium Italian eggplant
- 1 large zucchini
- 2 red bell peppers
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 field tomatoes
- 2 large shallots, quartered
- 2 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- 1 cup white wine
- 2 cups canned tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon Herbes de Provence
Begin by preparing your vegetables. Cut the eggplant, zucchini, red pepper and field tomatoes into 3-cm cubes. Peel the shallots and slice into quarters. Peel the garlic and chop it roughly.
Place a large skillet or stove-top casserole dish over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil followed by the eggplant, zucchini and red peppers so that they are in a single layer (you may need to do this in batches). Add the salt and pepper and mix to combine. Fry for around 4-5 minutes, or until the vegetables have turned golden brown and have softened slightly. Spoon the cooked vegetables into a large bowl and set aside.
Add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and add the shallots, garlic, field tomatoes and thyme to the pan. Fry for 10 minutes, or until golden brown and soft.
Add the cooked vegetables back to the skillet along with the white wine, tomato sauce, thyme, and herbes de Provence. Stir to combine.
Cover the pan with a lid, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 40 minutes or until the vegetables are all soft and most of the liquid has evaporated off. While the stew is simmering, aim to stir the mixture every 10 minutes or so throughout this simmering process to ensure the vegetables do not burn. Once cooked, remove the thyme stems from the mixture (these are too tough to eat).
Serve this hot from the pan on it’s own or with a side of noodles or bread. Alternatively, you can serve this cold as a side for a cool and refreshing summer dish.