This is one of my most favorite vegetable dishes, made with tomatoes, zucchini, eggplant, and peppers, mixed with Mediterranean herbs, and stewed in olive oil.
The true origin is unknown, but it made its way to southern France, Northern Spain, and the Balearic Islands. Ratatouille as we know it is claimed by Nice in the Provence region of France, which borders Italy.
There are many interpretations of Ratatouille, but a true Ratatouille from Provence does not vary from its main ingredients.
Here is my delicious version.
2 zucchini diced into small cubes
1 medium size eggplant, diced into small cubes
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1 large red onion, sliced
5 large roma tomatoes, chopped
1 teaspoon of cumin
4 garlic cloves, minced
15 large basil leaves, chopped
2 sprigs of fresh oregano, chopped
Salt, season to taste
Black pepper, seasons to taste
Extra virgin Olive oil
Heat up olive oil in a heavy-bottomed sauté pan.
Add chopped red onions, minced garlic, and peppers. Sauté until slightly browned but not burnt.
Add more olive oil and add chopped zucchini and eggplant, season with salt and pepper and dust with cumin. You may add some more olive oil because the eggplant sucks up a lot of it.
Simmer for few minutes and mix well. Add rest of the ingredients and simmer all together.
Cook 20-30 minutes, but a few minutes before done, add more fresh basil and taste for seasoning. Put mixture in a sieve over a bowl so excess of olive oil can drip away.
You can make it ahead of time, it will keep up to 3-4 days in the fridge.
Happy cooking, and bon appetit!
~ Chef Kamil