Thursday, August 12, 2021

Summer Ratatouille

Ratatouille over couscous

Right about now, you might have more zucchini in your garden than you know what to do with. You’ve probably already cycled through the usual suspects (zucchini bread, zucchini pancakes, even zoodles…) and are ready for something else.

This recipe, from My Place at the Table by Alexander Lobrano, makes good use of not only zucchini, but also eggplant, bell peppers, ripe tomatoes, red onions, and fresh herbs. It is a delicious melange of summer’s best vegetables and is the perfect base for a number of different additions. 


Just out of the oven

Mr Lobrano suggests tossing it with pasta and salted capers (done!), or as a garnish to salmon (done!), or mixed into couscous with fresh mint (also done!) - they are all fabulous options (and you will probably come up with a few of your own!). I used pearl couscous, which are a bit bigger than average couscous so it made for a much heartier meal. 

With pasta

Another bonus of this recipe is that you can serve it lukewarm and it keeps well (refrigerated) for a few days so you can use it in all those terrific dishes mentioned above (lazy summer days cooking dilemma solved!). 


Oven-Roasted Ratatouille (Alexander Lobrano)

Total time: 1 hour

Serves 6


1 large eggplant (1 lb), trimmed and cut into 1” pieces

1 t fine table salt

1/4 C fruity extra-virgin olive oil, plus 2 TB for drizzling

2 large zucchini, trimmed, halved lengthwise, and cut into 1” pieces

1 red bell pepper, seeded, and cut into 1” pieces

1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, and cut into 1” pieces

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 red onions, peeled and cut into 1” wedges

3 large ripe tomatoes, cored and coarsely chopped into 1” pieces

1 t chopped fresh rosemary

1 t coriander seeds, coarsely ground*

1 t coarse sea salt

1/2 C torn fresh basil leaves


  1. Put eggplant in a colander and sprinkle with fine table salt. Toss eggplant and let it sit at least 45 minutes, stirring from time to time to expel bitter juices.
  2. Preheat oven to 375°. Pour olive oil into a large rectangular baking dish. Add zucchini, eggplant, red and yellow peppers, garlic, and onion wedges to baking dish and toss in olive oil to coat well. Sprinkle vegetables with chopped rosemary, sea salt, and coarsely ground coriander seeds, and toss again. Lightly drizzle with olive oil.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes, then stir in tomatoes. Continue baking until vegetables are soft, about 30 minutes more.
  4. Remove from oven and serve lukewarm with a garnish of torn basil.

* I could not find coriander seeds anywhere locally so I omitted this ingredient & the dish was still fabulous. See this article for substitutes

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