Ladiges cooks: Ratatouille - simple and varied

Do it how you want.

Ladiges cooks: Ratatouille - simple and varied

Do it how you want. But first read what our chef from Baden has to say about it. He knows which zucchini goes where. Today we have ratatouille, and it's not only healthy and vegan, it also tastes like a holiday.

At least since Walt Disney's film "Ratatouille" everyone thinks they know this dish. But it is not a mushy vegetable stew, as served as a side dish in many restaurants, but a delicious ragout made from Mediterranean vegetables that is cooked and enjoyed in endless variations around the Mediterranean. The dish probably originally came from Nice. But in the 20th century it appeared in Italy as Caponata and was refined there with capers. In Spain it is called Pisto and it is also native to Greece and Turkey.

The term ratatouille was coined as early as the 18th century and referred to simple stews. Formed from "rata" for a simple meal and the verb "touiller" meaning to stir.

Especially now in summer, when vegetables no longer have to be transported to Germany from distant greenhouses, I recommend cooking the ratatouille. It can be enjoyed both hot and cold and was once considered a meatless main dish for those who couldn't afford meat. Now that vegan food is popular and allergies are on the rise, the ratatouille should be making a comeback. It is not only healthy, but also gluten and lactose free.

The version I presented is a bit more complex - but the result speaks for itself. Since we cook the vegetables separately, we take into account the different cooking times of the vegetables and preserve the "roasted" flavors that are so popular.

preparation

Cut a cross into the front of the tomatoes, cut out the stalk in a circle and blanch briefly. Then quench and skin. Cut into small cubes and remove the core. Cut the aubergines into rough cubes with an edge length of approx. 3 cm and drain with plenty of sea salt. This takes about 20 minutes. Then dry the cubes with kitchen paper. Cut the courgettes into slices and the peppers into diamonds.

Peel and finely dice the onions. In a heavy skillet, sweat in a good amount of olive oil until translucent, without browning. Add the diced tomatoes and braise over the lowest heat. Season with a teaspoon of salt. If using dried herbs, add them finely chopped. Insert the fresh herbs as a bouquet (a bouquet is herbs that are tied together by the stem). Add the finely chopped garlic. Continue simmering everything on the lowest flame.

In another pan, first sauté the prepared aubergines over high heat until brown. Then add them to the sautéed tomatoes. Now do the same with the zucchini. The peppers come last and are only sautéed for a short time as they quickly become bitter as they brown. Season the ratatouille with a bouquet of fresh herbs and sea salt. Stir only a little so that the vegetables retain their own aroma and consistency.

Rice or simply French white bread goes very well with a hot ratatouille. If you want to serve the dish cold, it is advisable not to put it in the fridge, as many good flavors will be lost in the process. Of course, other ingredients can also be used, such as the capers, celery, pepperoni or dried tomatoes already mentioned. You can also round off the dish with chopped parsley or basil.

Try it out and develop your own home recipe, it will definitely be good!

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