Ratatouille is a traditional Provencal dish made with a mixture of slowly sautéed or roasted chunks of eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, tomato, onion and garlic. This nutritious, rustic Mediterranean vegetable stew is a meal in itself when served with crusty bread, but there are a variety of breakfast, lunch and dinner options for making use of a big batch. Try some different meal ideas with ratatouille during the summer, when eggplant, zucchini and peppers are plentiful in the garden.
Try some easy ratatouille serving suggestions to start your day. Add a few large spoonfuls of ratatouille to an omelette right before you fold it, or toss some into scrambled eggs for a quick, easy option. You might also bake ratatouille into a frittata for a simple yet impressive breakfast meal that feeds the whole family. Hash browns topped with ratatouille, breakfast sausage crumbles and fried or poached eggs makes a filling starter.
Pasta and Grains
Ratatouille is the perfect accompaniment for pasta, rice and other grains. Toss it into noodles and top with grated Parmesan or Romano cheese, or serve it on a bed of couscous and finish with a sprinkling of toasted nuts. For a hearty meal, top rice and beans with a generous portion of ratatouille. Throw together cold pasta salads for quick summer meals; stir cold ratatouille into cold rotini, then toss with mild vinaigrette dressing and garnish with fresh parsley.
Serve sausage in a crusty roll and top with ratatouille for a satisfying sandwich. Instead of making the same old pizza, top crust with sauce, ratatouille and grated mozzarella cheese. Create a comforting eggplant casserole by filling a shallow glass or ceramic baking dish with ratatouille and topping it with breadcrumbs and grated Parmesan. Drizzle olive oil over the top and bake in the oven until the breadcrumbs are golden brown. If you like, you might add ground meat or potatoes to the ratatouille before assembling your casserole.
Make It Your Own
Incorporate different ingredients to give your ratatouille a flavourful twist. Sauté the onions with harissa paste and stir drained chickpeas into the mixture for a Moroccan dish. Add pitted black olives, capers or chopped anchovies for an intense Mediterranean flavour, or finely chopped chilli peppers if you like it spicy. Ratatouille is one of the most versatile eggplant dishes you can make, since it can easily be altered to your taste.
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- "The New York Times"; One Culture's Ratatouille Is Another's Fill-in-the-Blank; Martha Rose Shulman; October 2010
- BBC Good Food: Ratatouille
- "Prevention"; Ratatouille: You Can Do It!; Carl Raymond; September 2009
- "The Guardian"; How to Make Perfect Ratatouille; Felicity Cloake; July 2010
- Former Chef: Midsummer's Garden Vegetable Ratatouille