It’s ratatouille season! Ratatouille is a classic end-of-summer French stew that’s fun to say (rat-tuh-TOO-ee) and fun to make. It’s packed with fresh produce: tomatoes, eggplant, zucchini and yellow squash, and bell pepper.
This summer, we sampled authentic French ratatouille in Provence. I liked some ratatouille more than others, so I vowed to come up with my own favorite ratatouille recipe when I came home. Today is the day!
In Provence, ratatouille is typically cooked on the stove. Each vegetable is cooked in olive oil until it’s properly tender. In the end, all of the ingredients are combined and simmered to meld the flavors.
The French know how to cook, and this concept is definitely one to follow. Ratatouille combines a large volume of late-summer vegetables that have different cook times. If you tried to throw them all into a pot at once, none of the veggies would have a chance to caramelize, the eggplant would fall apart by the time the zucchini is tender, and your ratatouille would probably never meet its full potential.
This recipe is a little different. We’re going to roast the vegetables until they’re deliciously caramelized on the edges and a little dehydrated (no squeaky or mushy zucchini here). Then, we’ll add those perfectly roasted veggies to a simmering fresh tomato sauce.
This method yields amazing ratatouille. My husband says it’s the best he’s ever had. It’s also easier to make than proper stovetop ratatouille, since it requires less time standing over the stove. Hooray!