Ratatouille is a traditional French Provençal stewed vegetable dish, originating in Nice. Though referred to commonly as ratatouille niçoise, ratatouille is popular among the entire Mediterranean coast as an easy summer dish. Wikipedia
Summer Tomato Stovetop Ratatouille
¼ cup grapeseed oil, divided
1 large clove elephant garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
1 leek, sliced, separated into ringlets, rinsed thoroughly and dried by squeezing in paper toweling
1 medium eggplant, peeled and diced
4 sweet peppers, sliced thinly (we used banana peppers, bell peppers, and Italian peppers)
Assorted in-season tomatoes, chopped, to yield 4-5 cups
1 small bunch fresh basil, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large, heavy saucepan, heat a small layer of oil over medium, to medium high heat to shimmering. Add garlic to heated oil and sauté, stirring constantly, about one minute.
Add sliced leeks to garlic in oil. Sauté, continually stirring, for about a minute, or until limp.
Add diced eggplant to mixture. Stirring frequently, cook until eggplant is tender. (Eggplant will soak up oil. Add oil as needed to prevent ingredients from sticking to the pan.)
Add sweet peppers and tomatoes to tender eggplant. Continue cooking over medium heat as tomatoes release juices and peppers reach tender-crisp stage, about 15 minutes.
Add minced fresh basil to pan, tossing to incorporate. Season well with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Reduce heat to medium low and cook for additional 5 minutes, or until all vegetables are soft and seasonings are well-incorporated.
Serve warm as a side dish, sandwich filling, pizza topping, or complement to meat, poultry, seafood or cheese.
This dish was prepared as a Chef Demo for local Texas Farmers Market, where I work as market chef, preparing seasonal dishes with best of the market ingredients monthly at both TFM Lakeline and TFM Mueller markets. All vegetables were donated by Johnson's Backyard Garden.
If you find yourself in the Austin area next month, I will be at the TFM Lakeline market from 10-12noon, August 13, and the TFM Mueller market from 11-1pm, August 14. Bring your seasonal food questions and an appetite! I'd love to chat.