Friday, 3 April 2015

Recipe - Ratatouille

Ratatouille is a traditional French Provençal stewed vegetable dish, originating in Nice. The full name of the dish is ratatouille niçoise. It's usually served as a side dish, but may also be served as a meal on its own (accompanied by pasta, rice or bread).

Film students might know…

Ratatouille is also the name of a 2007 American computer-animated comedy film, produced by Pixar Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures, about Remy, an idealistic and ambitious young rat, who dreams of becoming a cook.*

Serves: 4 – 6
2 large aubergines
4 small courgettes
2 red or yellow peppers
4 large ripe tomatoes
75ml olive oil
1 bunch basil
1 onion - thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves - crushed
25 ml red wine vinegar
5g sugar (any kind)

To prepare
  1. Cut the aubergines in half lengthways. Place them on the board, cut side down, slice in half lengthways again and then across into 1.5cm chunks
  2. Cut off the courgettes ends, then across into 1.5cm slices
  3. Peel the peppers from stalk to bottom. Hold upright, cut around the stalk, then cut into 3 pieces. Cut away any membrane, then chop into bite-size chunks
  4. Score a small cross on the base of each tomato, then put them into a heatproof bowl. Pour boiling water over the tomatoes, leave for 20 seconds, then remove. Pour the water away, replace the tomatoes and cover with cold water. Leave to cool, then peel the skin away. Quarter the tomatoes, scrape away the seeds with a spoon, then roughly chop the flesh.
  5. Set a frying pan over medium heat and when hot, pour in 2 tablespoonns of olive oil. Brown the aubergines for 5 minutes on each side until the pieces are soft. Set them aside
  6. Fry the courgettes in another tablespoons of the oil for 5 minutes, until golden on both sides
  7. Repeat with the peppers. Don’t overcook the vegetables at this stage, as they have some more cooking left in the next step
  8. Tear up the basil leaves and set aside
  9. Cook the onion in the pan for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and fry for a further minute
  10. Stir in the vinegar and sugar, then tip in the tomatoes and half the basil.
  11. Return the vegetables to the pan with some salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes.
  12. Serve with the basil

Recipe by Dan Ostler, Executive Chef at Brookes

* Courtesy of Wikipedia – we assume it’s accurate, but you may want to check – or do some other research!

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