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French Ratatouille

Comforting Ratatouille!

Who didn’t like “Ratatouille,” the animated feature film produced by Pixar and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures? The word may sound intimidating, being French and all, but this Provençal stewed vegetable dish, originating in Nice is easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy to make. It can be served as a meal or as a side dish. The secret of a good ratatouille is to cook the vegetables separately so that each will taste truly of itself. Ratatouille is always delicious and never fails to satisfy.

Comforting Ratatouille!

What will I need?

2 eggplants, cut into cubes

3 zucchinis, cut into cubes
1 red pepper, cut into cubes
1 yellow pepper, cut into cubes
4 tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2 onions, sliced lengthwise
3 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
1 tsp sugar
Herbes de provence (a mixture of rosemary, thyme, oregano, marjoram and other herbs)
2 bay leaves
Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

How is it done?

Your oven must be preheated to 180°C (350°F). Add 2 tablespoon of olive oil to a pan, and let the onions brown for 5 minutes over a low flame. When they are done, pour them into an oven-proof dish. Pour 1 tablespoon of olive oil into the pan, cut the peppers into small cubes and let them brown for 5 minutes, over a medium flame. Add them to the oven-proof dish too. Do the same for the eggplant and zucchini. Add more olive oil for the eggplants, because they “drink” it. Transfer the browned eggplant and zucchini to the oven-proof dish. Add the chopped tomatoes to the oven-proof dish, without cooking them. Add the Herbs de Provence, salt, pepper, sugar, garlic and the bay leaves. Stir everything together and put a lid on the oven-proof dish and let it bake for 1 hour. That’s it! Bon appétit!

Serves 4-5.

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Nandita Nulkar - Senior French, Italian, Spanish & Portuguese-English Translator, Editor, Reviewer, BITS Private Limited A woman of many letters, Nandita is as much at ease translating from the few languages that she knows as she is donning the various roles she loves, that of a mother, a wife, a hopeless travel addict and a die-hard yoga practitioner.Nandita has a keen eye for detail and it is virtually impossible to smuggle an error out without she being the first one to notice it.