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Ratatouille

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With Ratatouille (a new animated movie from Pixar) coming out in a couple weeks, I thought it would be fitting for me to present a recipe for Ratatouille (a dish from Provence). This is a wonderfully flavorful vegetable dish that can be served as either a side or as a main entree.

There are a variety of recipes for Ratatouille and the ingredients often change from cook to cook, but most contain eggplant (aubergine), garlic, onions, zucchini (Italian squash or marrows), and bell peppers. Usually the recipe is seasoned with Herbes de Provence, but (as in this recipe) it can be as simple as parsley and basil. Often the individual vegetable components are cooked separately in olive oil, but I like this recipe that cooks the vegetables together.

I adapted this recipe from the Culinary Institute of America's newest book - Vegetables: Recipes and Techniques from the World's Premier Culinary College (which I will review soon).

To begin, assemble the ingredients: 6 garlic cloves, 5 medium button or brown mushrooms (I prefer brown for more flavor), 1 medium zucchini, 5 sprigs of Italian parsley, 4 sprigs of basil, 1 medium onion, 1 can diced tomatoes (or 2 tomatoes peeled, seeded, and diced), chicken or vegetable stock (we'll need 3/4 cup or 180mL), 1 Tbs. tomato paste, 1 medium green bell pepper, and 1 large eggplant (about 1 pound or 450 g). Drain the canned tomatoes.


Wash and scrub all the vegetables. Remove the parsley and basil leaves from their stems. Dice the green bell pepper, eggplant, and onion. Quarter the zucchini lengthwise then slice into 1/4-in. (1/2 cm) segments. Quarter the mushrooms. Chop the parsley and the basil.


Start cooking by heating olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and saute until the garlic smell intensifies, about one minute.


Add the diced onion and continue to saute until they turn translucent, about 4 more minutes.


Once the onions are translucent, add 1 Tbs. tomato paste. The tomato paste will be in a clump and will take a bit of stirring and pressing to get it to spread out and cover the onions and garlic.


As you work at spreading the paste out and mixing it with the onions and garlic, the paste will cook and darken in color. Once some of the paste starts to stick to the pan and brown, it's time to add the stock (about one minute).


Pour in 3/4 cup chicken or vegetable stock and stir until the broth begins to simmer. Using your spatula or utensil, scrub the bottom of the pan to release any browned bits of garlic, onion, or tomato paste.


Add the diced eggplant, zucchini, bell peppers, and mushrooms. Stir to combine thoroughly and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring every couple minutes to promote even heating.


The eggplant will release a lot of liquid (slowly) into the pot and it's in this liquid that you'll want to simmer the other ingredients in. To evenly cook all the ingredients, you'll have to stir it to make sure the vegetables spend time touching eggplant liquid. As a bonus, the flavors mix amazingly well during this process.


The eggplant will mostly be falling apart at this point, but the zucchini, bell peppers, and mushrooms should be tender but not yet mushy.


Add the diced tomatoes and stir in. After about a minute, the tomatoes will have heated through. Turn the heat down to the lowest setting.


Stir in the chopped parsley and basil. Add salt and pepper to taste.



Although ratatouille is usually served hot, we love eating this dish cold (usually at room temperature) with freshly toasted slices of a baguette especially during the summer.


Ratatouille (serves 4 to 6)
2 Tbs. olive oilsaute until aromatic over medium heat (1 min)saute until translucent (4-5 min)mix in and cook until color deepens (1 min)deglaze pansimmer, stirring often until vegetables are tender (10-12 min)stir in and heat until warm (1 min)stir in and take off heatseason to taste
6 cloves garlicmince
1 medium (200 g) oniondice
1 Tbs. (16 g) tomato paste
3/4 cup (180 mL) chicken or vegetable stock
1 large (450 g) eggplantdice
1 medium (140 g) zucchiniquarter & slice
5 medium (100 g) brown mushrooms (cremini)quarter
1 medium (150 g) green bell pepperdice
14-1/2 oz. (411 g) can diced tomatoesdrain
5 sprigs Italian (flat-leaf) parsleychop
4 sprigs Basilchop
salt & pepper

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Written by Michael Chu
Published on
120 comments on Ratatouille:(Post a comment)

On June 14, 2007 at 04:46 AM, Michael Chu said...
Looking for Pixar's Ratatouille as well?
Here's the trailer and a 10 minute featurette.


On June 14, 2007 at 06:12 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Just wanna let you kno..do you mean 'once the onions are translucent' instead of tomatoes?


On June 14, 2007 at 08:19 AM, Michael Chu said...
Anonymous wrote:
Just wanna let you kno..do you mean 'once the onions are translucent' instead of tomatoes?

Thanks! I fixed that error.


On June 14, 2007 at 01:23 PM, Ishbel said...
Michael - I've never had mushrooms in ratouille- either here or in France - but it might be an interesting addition.

It is often served cold in Provence, and I like to do that, too.


On June 15, 2007 at 10:23 PM, A visitor (guest) said...
I once ate at a family's house in France where they served ratatouille over scrambled eggs. I don't know how common this is, but it was awesome.

I like my rat flavored with rosemary, instead of basil, if anyone is interested in variations on this recipe.


On June 16, 2007 at 05:49 PM, bruno6012 (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
I am surprised that you put mushroom in the ratatouille. My advise is rather to add paprika.
When you do it with eggs and paprika it is called piperade it is a recipe from the basque country.


On June 18, 2007 at 09:40 AM, Ishbel said...
I love piperade - but have only ever made it with a little thyme - do you use Spanish paprika (I know the dish is from the French side of the Basque country!)


On June 25, 2007 at 07:28 PM, Jim said...
Wow, that looks REALLY good. I usually won't touch anything cooked with eggplant, but those pictures are convincing me to change my mind!

Also, on the subject of ratatouille--we're hosting a contest over at Recipe4Living. Whoever submits the best recipe wins free movie tickets, so if you're interested, feel free to enter!


On June 26, 2007 at 06:46 PM, Gabbie (guest) said...
Subject: Try Roasting Peppers & Eggplant
When I make Ratatoiulle, I always place my green pepper over the burner of my stove and turn it on to high, then turn so it blackens it all the way around, then scrape off the blackend skin with a fork or grapefruit spoon and slice, I add this usually when it is finished cooking, since the flame cooks the pepper.

Also, if you dice the eggplant, sprinkle generously with salt, let sit for 1/2 hour, then rinse and bake or cook, then it will draw out the moisture and stay more firm.


On June 30, 2007 at 11:19 AM, OUCH (guest) said...
Subject: I'll try it!
I really hate eggplant, however, it's looking so good I'll give it a try!


On July 01, 2007 at 09:00 PM, an anonymous reader said...
How much dried parsley/oregano should i substitute for the fresh in this dish?


On July 04, 2007 at 05:38 AM, redwoodsorrel (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille recipe
My favorite ratatouille recipe is the one in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. It's time-consuming, because it includes a process of sweating the liquid out of the eggplant and zucchini before cooking them and then slowly cooking all the vegetables together in layers until most of the tomato liquid has evaporated, but when it's finished it's glorious and intense.


On July 09, 2007 at 11:22 PM, Rebecca (guest) said...
I've cooked with eggplant before and it came out bitter. Someone told me that I should always salt and drain the eggplant before using it to drain off the bitter juices... I notice that you don't do that in this recipe. What's the deal?


On July 10, 2007 at 09:23 AM, Michael Chu said...
Rebecca wrote:
I've cooked with eggplant before and it came out bitter. Someone told me that I should always salt and drain the eggplant before using it to drain off the bitter juices... I notice that you don't do that in this recipe. What's the deal?

I've salted eggplant before to reduce the bitterness and it never seemed to work as well as suggested. After some experimentation, I now believe that salting eggplant serves the purpose of firming up the structure of the eggplant flesh so it retains its form better during cooking. This practice also helps mask the bitterness a little, but the bitterness is not greatly reduced. The practice of salting eggplant was probably practiced to firm up the flesh (as it is in many recipes) and then later was attributed to reducing bitterness. The real secret is to just buy young eggplant (at least the common and asian varieties are not bitter when young). Older eggplants (they feel lighter/hollower and may have skin that is more shriveled and not tight and plump) tend to be much more bitter. Some other varieties of eggplant may also tend to be bitter too. Avoid these for this dish.

If you wish the diced eggplant to retain their shape more in this dish, then spend the time to salt them (slice them into rounds and sprinkle salt on them and let them sit on a wire rack set in a sheet pan for 1 to 2 hours). This should draw out some of the liquid (you'll see a little bit in the pan if you're lucky) but mostly serve to draw moisture out of the cells and into the gaps between them. This helps prevent the eggplant from soaking up an excessive amount of liquid and oil which leads to their falling apart. At this point, just rinse off the excess salt and dice.


On July 13, 2007 at 04:32 AM, gale (guest) said...
Subject: salting the eggplant
I always cut my eggplant into thick rounds, and salt it. I then cover it with a heavy plate and maybe a thick book to weight it down, it only takes about 30 minutes to get the liquids out. To me, this makes a big difference in the taste of eggplant...no bitterness. I then rinse the eggplant and use it in my recipe.


On July 14, 2007 at 04:43 PM, phong (guest) said...
Oops, I posted this in the off-topic rattatouille thread but it really belongs in the recipe article.

This is the recipe Thomas Keller developed for confit byaldi (rattatouille) that appears in the movie.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/13/dining/131rrex.html?ex=1184558400&en=246c44656ea4e8ff&ei=5070


On September 10, 2007 at 02:05 PM, an anonymous reader said...
re: eggplant - a simple way to avoid all the salting and rinsing is this - once the onions garlic etc are done add the eggplant separately and cook for a while before adding any other ingredients - this will remove the bitterness as it will cook off the fluid. Likewise if using green peppers/capiscum - personally I always go for red, yellow or orange.

Another thing to try - if you have the time - cook all the ingredients separately (with exception of mushrooms and garlic - great together) - only combine with the tomatoes at the end, a great tip from Keith Floyd, makes for a great flavour.

One last thing - never, ever forget a good healthy dose of red wine :-)


On September 11, 2007 at 05:47 PM, SJP (guest) said...
Subject: Saute Garlic BEFORE Onion!?!?!
Excellent recipe!

But, why would anyone ever saute their minced garlic [u:cac403ae2a]before[/u:cac403ae2a] their onions? Any good chef will tell you that your garlic will be apt to burn especially in an olive oil which boils hotter than some other oils (like vegetable, canola, and others).

And, while we're on the topic of saute and flavour, you might want to experiment with a very small amount of sesame oil - it also boils very hot but it adds a beautiful aroma to the ratatouille.

Happy cooking, y'all.


On September 27, 2007 at 03:37 PM, jen:guest (guest) said...
Subject: recipe card format
How did you format this recipe card this way? I would like my recipe cards in this layout. Thanks for any tips.


On October 08, 2007 at 09:51 PM, suebee (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
If you dump your ratatouille in a buttered casserole and sprinkle it with parmesan cheese, it is the bomb! Bake for about half an hour at 350 degrees.


On November 07, 2007 at 04:24 AM, Julie (guest) said...
Subject: garlic before onion
But, why would anyone ever saute their minced garlic before their onions? Any good chef will tell you that your garlic will be apt to burn especially in an olive oil which boils hotter than some other oils (like vegetable, canola, and others).

This bothered me when I read it, but I didn't respond because the comment wasn't worth dignifying with a response. Any good chef would know how to saute their garlic before onions without burning the former. My mom often cooks this way--its gives the garlic time to release a deeper flavor, as my chef-instructors in cooking school taught me. And if there need be anymore proof, I give you an excerpt from the venerable James Beard's Beard on Food as he delivers his own Ratatouille recipe to his readers:

First, heat 1/2 cup oil--it can be olive or peanut oil, but olive oil definitely gives the best taste--in a heavy skillet and very gently saute 5 finely chopped garlic cloves. Add 1 1/2 cups chopped onion, and let that melt down and blend with the garlic ...

I've cooked your recipe a few times, always with the garlic first, as directed, and never burned my garlic once. Watch your temperature, and push the garlic around as needed--easy as that. Thank you for your recipe--it's awesome!


On November 10, 2007 at 12:32 AM, Cucina Pro said...
What is that lovely pan you are using to cook it in?


On November 10, 2007 at 07:29 AM, Michael Chu said...
Cucina Pro wrote:
What is that lovely pan you are using to cook it in?

That's an All-Clad Stainless 8-qt. Stock Pot. One of my favorite pots to cook in - lots of space and high sides that keep messes contained. Thick aluminum clad with stainless makes it easy to see if food is browning and evenly heats so nothing burns - even when I stop stirring to take pictures.


On November 17, 2007 at 08:13 PM, Guest (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
Hi, that recipe really looks great, but I was wondering, of course, referring to the animated movie Ratatouille, I believe you have seen it already, I am very curious about the way he cooked ratatouille, by baking, with the sauce, which I think it might be tomatoes rather sweet. He put those pieces of vegetables without leaveing any space in between, and at the end put a flour wrapping on it, to reserve the water and flavour, to keep them sweet and soft. Is that anyway you can try it? I might be wrong about the theory. But it seems to be a very interesting method and it gives a very good appetite. I couldn't resist from it when I saw it on the movie.
Regrads, thank you for the recipe anyway, and sorry about my english.

Au revoir. Martin.


On November 17, 2007 at 08:26 PM, Cucina Pro said...
The recipe from the New York Times (the link posted previously by Phong, above) is for Confit Byaldi and there is a short feature on the DVD if you rent the movie that shows Chef Thomas Keller making the recipe.

I made it last weekend and it was great. I don't understand about the "flour wrapper" though.

By the way, if anyone is under the illusion that the rat quickly knocked this out, there must have been several bottles of wine imbibed by the patron while he was waiting for this dish. It takes quite a while to make. Although it is very simple, there is a lot of prep work and it cooks a long time.


On November 20, 2007 at 09:27 PM, Tina Hart (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
Hi! Just read your recipe and this sounds delicious! I am so glad I came across your website and forwarded it to my husband immediately, as he LOVES to cook, and is getting better than I am, altho will never admit it! I had Ratatouille once when I was a child (yes, I loved my veggies and still do!) and thought it was the best thing my Mom ever made, and she never made it again since that day. Go figure! I agree eating cold or room temp with toasted baguette or sliced french bread is delicious. There is a russian dish that is mostly eggplant, called "Ekra" that we cook, and it's always better the next day, cold or room temperature, made with eggplant, garlic, onion, tomato paste and ketchup (shhhh, ketchup really is a fabulous seasoning to cook with, or catsup, however you want to spell it). Thank you so much for sharing the recipe, and how you lay out the ingredients, cooking times, pictures, and the final recipe on the bottom of the page.


On November 23, 2007 at 07:43 PM, Dastardly Doug (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
I just finished watching the movie Ratatouille and promptly found this site.
Being both an engineer and a good cook, I could imagine the flavors building and blending into one great dish as I read the receipe. I would like to write more but my stomach is growling, my mouth is watering and I am on my way out the door to buy the ingredients for tonights dinner...ratatouille. :lol:


On November 24, 2007 at 05:11 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: what is a less expensive wine to go with ratatouille?
In the delightful movie, the critic Ego asks for a glass of chavel blanc 1947. That is on Forbes list for the 10 most expensive wines at $33,781 for 750ml. Earlier he asks for Chateau La tour1961 that goes for E11,713.a bottle am i missing the irony of a so called peasant dish and expensive wine or is this just thrown in as part of the movie to impress us with theeducated test of the critic. my son Jimmy is a chef in Cincinnatti and he is making this for my Christmas present, the so called "peasant dish".


On December 04, 2007 at 05:25 PM, Eloise (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
loved your ratatouille recipe. it was the best I ever made, helped of course by delicious Japanese eggplant and other locally grown ingredients here in Hawaii where I am vacationing. I found your site by accident- love the photos and clarity- have told my kids to check it out. thanks


On December 10, 2007 at 04:26 AM, esbee (guest) said...
Subject: recipe like the movie
is there a recipe on how to make ratatouille so it looks just like what was in the pixar cartoon movie?


On December 14, 2007 at 04:03 AM, luganrn (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille ala movie
American chef Thomas Keller invented a contemporary variation, confit byaldi, for the film Ratatouille. Please go to the following link for more info:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confit_byaldi


On January 06, 2008 at 02:57 AM, student (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
Just made it, it is really good, i dont usually like egg plant.
I love the site, the recipes are easy to follow and ingredients are simple!


On January 07, 2008 at 11:52 PM, Chirpie (guest) said...
Subject: It's worth noting...
Ego ordered the Blanc 41 before he knew what he was eating. He was assuming the dish would be of extravagant origins, which made the Chef's choice all the more surprising. (And a great reminder of the emotional connection we can have to food)


On January 11, 2008 at 10:48 PM, flunazuniga123@aol.com (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
Concerning Ms.Tina Hart comment I believe all vegetable dishes or meats and vegetables for that matter will have more flavor and better taste the day after. As my mother used to say the dish flavors will settle and blend better after a day has past.
As a frustrated engineer and would be cook I love your site


On January 16, 2008 at 11:50 PM, Peter Zelchenko (guest) said...
Quote:
re: eggplant - a simple way to avoid all the salting and rinsing is this - once the onions garlic etc are done add the eggplant separately and cook for a while before adding any other ingredients - this will remove the bitterness as it will cook off the fluid.


That doesn't make sense. How does merely evaporating the water out of the eggplant remove the bitter component that will remain in the pan? And once you add other liquids, it will be reinfused into the moisture.

From the responses I've read and from my experience, I think the salting will work, if you are patient and remove enough liquid. That means you need enough salt. You can actually take the eggplant and squeeze it as hard as you want, like a sponge, to get even more of liquid out. This is more appropriate for when you want to deep-fry eggplant, but it will get lots of moisture out.


On January 20, 2008 at 10:24 AM, arkaren80 (guest) said...
Subject: What about nutrients?
If you keep squeezing the moisture out of the eggplants and then simmer the veggies for a long time in the pot, won't all the nutrients evaporate as well? What will the nutritive value of ratatouille be?


On January 20, 2008 at 01:39 PM, Dilbert said...
that eggplant is bitter may actually no longer be true - improved varieties do not demonstrate such a strong tendency. at one time, peeling eggplant was considered "mandatory" due to "bitterness" - that is definitely no longer true in my first hand experience.

salting the eggplant to remove water has another effect: slices / pieces maintain their shape and consistency better vs. going to mush when cooked.

same with sliced cucumbers in german cucumber salad - slice, salt, allow to stand & drain water keeps them crispier & crunchier.


On January 30, 2008 at 06:05 PM, luv2cook (guest) said...
Subject: ratatoille
My mother-in-law taught me how to remove the bitterness of eggplant and I find it works very well. Slice the eggplant and layer on a baking sheet. Next sprinkle sugar lightly over all and let set for an hour. Rinse well before preparing your dish or the eggplant will be sweet. This method also firms up the flesh. I love this site.


On February 10, 2008 at 09:22 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: an alternatıve for parsley?
Im plannıng on makıng thıs dısh for dınner tomorrow evening for my husband and frıend. The only thıng ıs we all hate parsley and was wonderıng what would be a good alternatıve. Also I only have drıed basıl so how much of that should I use ınstead ıf fresh??? Thanks cant waıt to get cookıng.


On February 12, 2008 at 01:07 PM, flunazuniga123@aol.com (guest) said...
Subject: Re: an alternatıve for parsley?
Anonymous wrote:
Im plannıng on makıng thıs dısh for dınner tomorrow evening for my husband and frıend. The only thıng ıs we all hate parsley and was wonderıng what would be a good alternatıve. Also I only have drıed basıl so how much of that should I use ınstead ıf fresh??? Thanks cant waıt to get cookıng.


A good substitute for parsley is finely cut, fresh celery leaves to be used in small amounts as it is stronger tasting than parsley. Concerning the bitterness of the aubergine it is less so if one uses new or fresh ones, also I neutralize the bitterness by adding slices of apple on top of the aubergine when cooking the ingredients the way Remy did


On February 19, 2008 at 05:49 PM, michael b (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
Michael,

I happened to make Ratatouille the other night, and had really excellent results. The recipe I used did not use broth - and alternately used fresh tomatoes and no stock of any kind. Also - after browning the onions and eggplant, and adding the rest of the veges the cooking was finished in the oven with an herb garni. I'm sure there are 100s of variations on this, but have you ever tried it this way? My results were very stellar.


On March 03, 2008 at 10:57 AM, an anonymous reader said...
"Once some of the paste starts to still to the pan and brown, it's time to add the stock (about one minute)."

"still" = "stick", correct?


On March 03, 2008 at 12:51 PM, Michael Chu said...
Anonymous wrote:
"Once some of the paste starts to still to the pan and brown, it's time to add the stock (about one minute)."

"still" = "stick", correct?

Stick is correct. I've correct the article.


On March 07, 2008 at 01:53 AM, pzelchenko (guest) said...
"correct" => "corrected", right?

(SICR)


On March 07, 2008 at 01:54 AM, pzelchenko (guest) said...
Subject: One other question...
Okay, why would salting or sugaring make the flesh of the vegetable more durable? I know it does with pickles, but what is happening?


On March 07, 2008 at 05:45 PM, Michael Chu said...
pzelchenko wrote:
"correct" => "corrected", right?

Hahahaha. Yep, another typo caught! I have not corrected this one. :)


On March 07, 2008 at 06:39 PM, Dilbert said...
>>but what is happening?

don't know about sugar, not done that
but salt causes "stuff" to lose moisture - salt cured meats, etc.
natrium did a pretty good job on Egyptian mummies . . .

salt reduces spoilage - as in meats by less water to aid rot & pH changes which discourages the bacterial bugs.

for stuff like cucumbers the extracted water leaves the remaining cells crisper over time.

the exact bio-<whatever> / chemical reactions are not my expertise . . .


On April 15, 2008 at 10:06 PM, Cargam1 (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatuile
Well I am not French, but Italian and can tell you that when cooking eggplant, we always salt the pieces and let them sweat for an hour or two. Ratatuile might very well be the equivalent of our Caponata Siciliana. In our Caponata, even with all the salting, we still add a bit of sugar when frying the eggplant. Nevertheless, it's a great recipe and as long as you enjoy your version, who's to say au contrarie! :)


On April 17, 2008 at 10:00 AM, hyk (guest) said...
Subject: I m in love
Hi! thank you Micheal.

We are an engaged couple and Ratatouille has a special meaning for us since it is the first movie that we have gone together ;)

I think it will be our special meal during our marrige :)


On April 17, 2008 at 10:36 AM, jetix (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
It seems delicious :)
And it sounds good to mcook this delicious meal with your love :)


On May 18, 2008 at 09:45 PM, gdy (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
I made a very similar dish (without eggplant) recently but for seasoning I used roasted red pepper and garlic (dry spice) as well as Balti (an Indian spice mixture). I served it with parmigiano reggiano. The Balti gave the dish a nice "warm" taste. It was simply delicious.


On May 21, 2008 at 07:38 PM, DrDave244 (guest) said...
Subject: Sugar vs. salt
A question was posted about the role of salt versus sugar as both a preservative and "firming up" the eggplant. The answer is that both salt and sugar have an osmotic effect on the fruit, thus "drawing water out" of the tissue and "into" the salt/sugar. Of course, movement is not one-way, so if you use salt some of it will diffuse INTO the eggplant (but more water will move out than salt moving in). The same is true of sugar. The reason salt (and sugar) have been used as preservatives historically is not really because they draw the water out of the food you are trying to preserve, but because they also draw the water out of the "bad stuff" that is also trying to eat the food before you get to it. Thus, salt prevents bacteria and fungus from growing/surviving in meats, and high sugar content prevents bacteria and fungus from growing/surviving in "preserved" fruits and veggies. Most bacteria and fungi do not survive well in high salt or high sugar environments, and because bacteria and fungi are the main agents of decomposition ("spoiling"), high levels of salt and sugar have long been used as preservatives. (Note: for the same reason, high levels of salt are not good inside our body... it tends to pull water out of our cells, so our body responds by retaining more water in order to "dilute" the salt, which in turn leads to high blood pressure, kidney problems, etc. High sugar can cause similar problems, but the main negative effect relates to insulin regulation problems)


On July 05, 2008 at 02:10 PM, ALCYONE68 (guest) said...
Subject: RATATOUILLE VARIATION
This is a wonderful recipe. I have made this frequently, with a few variations.
If you don't like mushrooms, substitute with three pieces of crispy bacon crumbled.
Add several 1/4 cup of merlot about 5 minutes before you finish cooking and top each serving lightly with fresh parmesan -asiago mix cheese.

Or, substitute mushrooms with three pieces of crispy bacon crumbled.


On August 05, 2008 at 03:09 PM, Momchil (guest) said...
Subject: Thank you!
God bless you and your cooking Mike!

This is a wonderful recipe! There is a traditional dish in Bulgaria that is very similar, except that there are no mushrooms and the peppers are baked as somebody suggested. Nevertheless I am trying yours and I am delighted!

THANK YOU!


On August 13, 2008 at 02:47 AM, FeliciafromSeattle (guest) said...
Subject: Made it my own
I loved your recipe, but to make it a little heartier, I added carrots and paired it with a cornbread muffin.


On September 08, 2008 at 01:30 AM, an anonymous reader said...
This recipe is good. In order to make it awesome, the changes I would suggest are:
1. Sautee half the eggpalnt in olive oil by itself, and add with the tomatoes. (allows for some identifiable - and VERY tasty eggplant)
2. Use white wine instead of the broth
3. Serve with shaved parmesian and crusty french bread
Bon Appetit!


On September 21, 2008 at 06:21 PM, Kirsty (guest) said...
Subject: yummy!
I just cooked your recipe, more or less as you suggested, and it was divine. My kids ate it! I guess one contributing factor to its outstanding awesomeness would be that everything came from my garden. It's the first year I've grown everything myself and I highly recommend it. Thanks for a delicious recipe that gets the good stuff down the kids' necks.


On October 16, 2008 at 05:57 AM, sophie-paulette artista00 (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
ratatouille is a healthy dish, simple and rich in flavor. it will look much better or pleasent to your eyes if you bake it. It is important 2 present the food on a dish . make as the Remi did it. Do not mix and stir. make an ar work with it.
No musrooms, no broth(yikes salt/sodium who needs that?). is a very inexpensive and nutritious dish and Is French of course!
send me an e-mail and i explain 2 you how to make it look like a very expensive dish. then add the expensive wine. artista00@yahoo.com :D


On November 26, 2008 at 05:12 PM, RanchHouseDelux (guest) said...
Subject: What about Presentation?
What I want to know is how we can alter this great recipe so we can present this dish just as it was in the movie--as a stunning, architectural centerpiece on the plate. All ratatouilles I've had or seen are so stewish, which is fine most of the time, but for a special occasion, I want a bit of Voila. Any ideas?


On December 10, 2008 at 11:52 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Great Recipe
I just love this. I never has any professionally or traditionally made before but this one i made was just perfect. the texture, the smell, the taste, it was all perfect.


On December 12, 2008 at 01:12 AM, brand0 (guest) said...
Subject: minutes
I am thinking of cooking this dish after seeing Remy's film.
but one thing I've noticed on all the articles online that I've search is that:

-mostly veggie
-very flexible dish

but the cooking time, is it too long considering that veggies tend to lose their potent(or vitamins+minerals) if heated too long?


On January 12, 2009 at 12:31 AM, an anonymous reader said...
so i had no idea that ratatouille was a real dish. not even after the movie came out. HAHA

so i decided to try it out although i have NEVER eaten eggplant before. i don't know how ratatouille's supposed to taste, but i thought it was excellent. i didn't do any sweating of the eggplant and i tasted no bitterness at all. instead of pairing it w/ a bagguette(didn't buy any at the time), i toasted some sourdough bread instead and it was fantastic. my husband doesn't usually eat veggies and thought it was really good. LOL

so i give it 2 very enthusiastic thumbs up. :oD


On January 20, 2009 at 01:14 AM, an anonymous reader said...
My daughter watched the movie and wanted ratatouille for dinner. Made this version minus the green peppers. It was GREAT! will definitely make it again. Our son who usually complains about onions ate 3 helpings.


On February 09, 2009 at 06:54 PM, Tasha6075 (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille Dish
I am going to try to cook this for my family mainly our 5year old who makes us watch ratatouille at least once a week...and I never bore of the movie either love it. We even went to disneyland paris and he was mainly interested in seeing remy and eating in his restuarant even though we did not try the ratatouille I WOULD like to now...many thanks to whoever posted this its clearly popular...well leave feedback when we have cooked it.


On February 10, 2009 at 11:18 PM, Question (guest) said...
Hey...you manage to be so f**king precise about everything else and yet you can't manage to state "how much" olive oil to use. Some engineer. It's guys like you who cause space rovers to crash.


On February 11, 2009 at 12:30 AM, Michael Chu said...
Question wrote:
Hey...you manage to be so f**king precise about everything else and yet you can't manage to state "how much" olive oil to use. Some engineer. It's guys like you who cause space rovers to crash.

Wow, much anger... please refer to the recipe summary table at the bottom of the article.


On February 15, 2009 at 04:45 AM, Cerises (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
in response to :unsure: about how much olive oil to use it's at the bottom of the recipe...plus :) my French mother in law taught me this recipe...way back when...she was from Brittany and an excellent cook she added a nice sausage which you can serve on the side and she added eggs which she cracked over the ratatouille depends on how many people are served and put a lid to simmer to poach the eggs...different to some but remember in different regions of France your going to get a little variance in this wonderful dish!!! Have fun!


On March 14, 2009 at 08:05 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Hi,

I'm from India and found this recipe super. I use a lot of eggplant - in other dishes - and have never found the need to remove "bitterness". Eggplants, in my experience - are just not bitter! And salting / sugaring / rinsing would remove a lot of the nutrients - particularly the iron, wouldn't it?
The one thing that i DO know is that no one cooks eggplant in iron saucepans - traditionally.
Cheers!
p.s. my husband is an engineer - and he approves of this format - but he's a terrible cook otherwise!!! ;)


On March 23, 2009 at 06:59 AM, Rachelle (guest) said...
Subject: YUM!
I had this dish at a restaurant today and look forward to making it at home with your recipe. Thank you for this site. ;o)


On April 18, 2009 at 01:19 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: turned out great!
Thank you for this wonderful recipe. I made it last night and everyone loved it.

I doubled the quantity and followed your recipe with these minor variations:

1. I happened to have a handful of toasted pine nuts, which I tossed in when I added broth. They turned out to be a perfect addition. They add a whole new dimension to the dish but are absolutely organic with all other flavors.

2. This is a traditional Eastern European twist on the dish: serve it with a dollop of good sour cream.

Today, since there were not enough leftovers for dinner, I added some roasted potatoes to the dish while reheating it. Potatoes change the nature of the dish making it heartier (or some might say heavier) but I like this way too.

Thank you for this recipe. I will make it again.


On April 29, 2009 at 10:50 PM, Jonina (guest) said...
Subject: a couple of comments on older posts
First, cooking for engineers! I love it! I was a math and physics major and am still proudly a nerd (and yes, I'm a woman!)

Someone mentioned eating ratatouille with scrambled eggs. That reminded me of a Middle Eastern dish called shakshouka (transliteration varies--it's pronounced shock-SHOO-ka) that is eggs poached in stewed tomatoes and often eaten with French fries aka chips--great cheap lunch. If you served it with some nice bread or rolls instead of the chips it would pass for brunch food.

Also, as I discovered (and so did at least one other reader) there are two kinds of ratatouille. One, which I've made before, is essentially roasted vegetables--and includes potatoes. This looks to be the stew kind, and I'm going to try it.

And I love the confirmation code, too!


On June 06, 2009 at 07:41 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Great site. Thank you for the pics as well. :)
I just wanted to add that "shakshouka" is actually a Nothern African dish not a Middle Eastern, and usually made without mashrooms, but definitely scrambled eggs.


On June 16, 2009 at 11:51 PM, le marseillais (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
There are no mushrooms in ratatouille! Ratatouille is eggplant, zucchini, tomato, red and green bell pepper, onion and garlic stewed in olive oil with salt and pepper. Bon appétit!


On June 21, 2009 at 08:09 PM, Joyce (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatioully
Re: your excellent discussion about the addition of salt and sugar to this dish. . . .

It is exactly that combination (of salt and sugar) we use in seasoning salmon to make 'locks'. Putting this combination on raw salmon pulls all the moisture out of it. Here in Denmark, Locks/Lax are called 'gravid lax.' In the old days, when there were no refrigerators, Danes would salt and pepper their fresh-caught salmon, put a weight on it, and bury it for several days. ('Gravid' = Grave in Danish.)


On June 21, 2009 at 08:15 PM, Joyce (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatioully
Re: your excellent discussion about the addition of salt and sugar to this dish. . . .

It is exactly that combination (of salt and sugar) we use in seasoning salmon to make 'locks'. Putting this combination on raw salmon pulls all the moisture out of it. Here in Denmark, Locks/Lax are called 'gravid lax.' In the old days, when there were no refrigerators, Danes would salt and sugar their fresh-caught salmon, put a weight on it, and bury it for several days. ('Gravid' = Grave in Danish.)


On August 08, 2009 at 09:56 PM, vppeterson (guest) said...
Subject: ratatouille
For those who want no fat at all in their diet, simmer all in chicken broth. Just before serving, add a couple of stalks of celery slithered into 1/16" slices - lovely crunch. Coarsely grated Swiss cheese over top is an added bonus.


On August 10, 2009 at 11:27 AM, sakura (guest) said...
As an admitted foodie and chef for a living, I loved the step by step process with photos for this recipe. I'm told this is a peasant dish where they would just throw together whatever they had available or in season, which is relatively vague. Having never made (or tried) ratatouille, and having found out that I have to make it today, this was the best way to catch a glimpse of how its supposed to turn out. Great recipe!!


On August 16, 2009 at 08:14 PM, juls (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
I love this whole website...and this dish was awesome.
I have made Ratatouille before but not with mushrooms.
I didn't put mushrooms in and I substituted Iltalian Seasoning for
the herbs....Delicious!


On August 18, 2009 at 04:56 PM, Binge Frenefits (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille and eggplants
About eggplants and salt:

In general, the long, narrow kinds of eggplants found all over Asia have no bitterness and need no salting. The large, bulbous kind generally need to be sliced, salted, and pressed to remove brown, bitter juices before rinsing and using them.


On August 19, 2009 at 03:40 AM, Psychepirate (guest) said...
Subject: The Eggplant
Hi! I'm planning on making this soon and I'm a little confused about the eggplant, I've never worked/cooked with it before. I've been told I'm supposed to drain the liquid/salt/strain, I've read a lot of the comments on here as well, but in the recipe you say that the eggplant will release a lot of liquid and the other veggie's will simmer in them for a great flavor. Do you recommend draining/straining/salting the eggplant before cooking this dish?


On August 19, 2009 at 06:01 AM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: The Eggplant
Psychepirate wrote:
Hi! I'm planning on making this soon and I'm a little confused about the eggplant, I've never worked/cooked with it before. I've been told I'm supposed to drain the liquid/salt/strain, I've read a lot of the comments on here as well, but in the recipe you say that the eggplant will release a lot of liquid and the other veggie's will simmer in them for a great flavor. Do you recommend draining/straining/salting the eggplant before cooking this dish?

I do not salt/drain my eggplant. When selecting globe eggplants, pick heavy eggplants with firm skin. Perhaps I've been lucky, but I've never bought a bitter one... I have had bitter eggplant at other people's houses and at restaurants and my only guess is that older eggplant may develop a bitterness that needs to be dealt with. The problem is that the bitter eggplant that I've had have all been salted, etc. so I'm currently of the opinion that it's just best to buy fresh eggplant and dispense with the whole salting operation. I've not yet done experiments on this though.


On August 19, 2009 at 11:58 AM, Dilbert said...
eggplant, cucumbers and okra all benefit from picking and eating the young / small size. bigger is not better for these critters.

two things on the bitterness associated with eggplant - first, modern varieties have much less tendency to get bitter, and second - it's an age thing. younger, smaller, not hollow sounding to a thump are my guidelines - with salting/draining not required.

the salting/draining is actually not some 'old wives tale' - in my grandmother's younger days, it was true and required. she lived to 95 and was heavy duty into gardening and cooking. the eggplant has improved <g>


On August 26, 2009 at 01:22 AM, Suzanne (guest) said...
Subject: Ratatouille
While living in Germany, I visited a neighbor just before dinner and smelled heavenly aromas from her kitchen. That was my initial introduction in 1977. Renate did not use green peppers, however, but did add basil, oregano, and thyme. She served it over couscous and sprinkled the dish with either fresh grated Emmentaler Swiss or Parmesan cheese. I've never done the eggplant/salt prep as I've never had a bitter eggplant. I don't use mushrooms either. I think it is best if made the day before you plan to serve it. I combine it with a green salad on the side and voila! a healthy, hearty, and totally satisfying meal with great leftovers. Tonight, I'm trying it with a splash of red wine as one of the contributors suggested. Tomorrow, it will be perfect!
PS For years, I spelled it phonetically: "RAHTAHTOOWEE" While in France, I discovered how it was supposed to be spelled. Thanks to you and to Disney for bringing this wonderful experience to all of us Paisants.


On August 26, 2009 at 05:38 PM, Amanda (guest) said...
Is it at all possible to use frozen green peppers instead of fresh? I have 5 large frozen peppers and would love to find a use for them. Thanks!


On August 26, 2009 at 06:46 PM, Dilbert said...
>>frozen peppers

absolutely.

I garden and often have a big surplus of green bell peppers. wash slice dice freeze on a flat cookie sheet on in a thin layer. once frozen, bag'em for storage.

although I'm not a "hot pepper freak" I've found banana peppers nicely warm - do the same with them except just sliced vs diced.....

do not just slice and/or dice and put in a bag for freezing - it takes longer to freeze, they get soft(er) and you have just a single frozen mass. freezing in a thin layer lets you break up the chunks so you don't have to use the whole bag in one go.


On September 06, 2009 at 10:41 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Great!
Another Engineer here - did great with this recipe!! Went with red wine, no stock, no mushrooms, added half can canned corn, extra heavy on garlic and onions.

FANTASTIC!!! YUMMmmmm


On September 09, 2009 at 01:25 AM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Ratatouille - yum!
This dish is the best use of the summer vegetables! I don't use mushrooms either, prefer to stay with the classic ingredients of zucchini, eggplant, sweet peppers, onions & garlic. Use the best quality olive oil (extra-virgin) and Japanese eggplants (they are not bitter). I generally make this a day ahead, refrigerate, and reheat the next day for best flavor. Heat the olive oil in a sturdy pot and add ingredients as you chop them. I tend to add in this order: onions, garlic, eggplant (more olive oil), peppers, zucchini & tomatoes. Add as much oil as you need to prevent sticking. Italian seasoning (basil, oregano, marjoram & thyme) and salt complete the dish. Steaming bowlfuls of this with chunks of sourdough bread are all you need.


On October 01, 2009 at 02:38 PM, LJB (guest) said...
Over brown rice.


On October 18, 2009 at 02:57 AM, Guest (guest) said...
Great recipe. I added a jalapeno and a couple of chile peppers to add some zest. I also skipped the tomato paste since I didn't have any. It didn't seem to be a problem.


On November 26, 2009 at 02:10 PM, Laurenist (guest) said...
I make this all the time now, so thank you. I usually mix the juices from the can of tomatoes and white wine in place of the stock. I'm going to have to try the red wine like someone above me. I also eat this as bruschetta and it's, well, amazing. Thanks!


On December 07, 2009 at 10:05 PM, CivilSarah (guest) said...
Subject: Substitution for Eggplant?
I realize this may be slightly sacrilegious, but I am not in the habit of keeping eggplant stocked in my fridge on a regular basis, nor am I a fan of the taste. Is there a veggie that would suffice as a substitute without compromising the flavor and texture of this dish? I have never tried it, but would love to use my husband as a guinea pig!

Thanks.


On December 08, 2009 at 01:49 PM, Dilbert said...
>>without compromising the flavor and texture of this dish?

hmmmm, perhaps texture but in the flavor department,,, not really [g]

there's a lot of of flavors in the dish - it does not turn out like "egg plant puree" so to speak - I would encourage you to try it. I don't stock eggplant either - I buy one when I want it.

buy small ones - bigger is not better in eggplant - it should be firm and have a smooth skin - no dimpling / wrinkling - that's past its prime.
I always peel mine - I don't care for the skin strips in my dishes.

for substitutions the first thing that comes to mind is zucchini - I suspect fairly thick slice (half inch or so) and watch the cooking time as zucchini goes to mush pretty quick when overcooked.


On December 28, 2009 at 02:58 PM, JULIETTE and boys (guest) said...
AFTER READING THE MAJORITY OF COMMENTS I HAD NO IDEA HOW MANY OPPINIONS PEOPLE HAD ABOUT A SIMPLE YET NOT SO COMMON RECIPE. IT WAS SO DIFFICULT TO FIND IN 10-15 COOKBOOKS I SEARCHED THRU. ONLY ONE HAD IT AND I WASNT GOING TO BUY THE BOOK JUST FOR ONE RECIPE. JULST LIKE A FEW READERS I WAS ASKED BY MY TWO BOYS 9 AND 12 TO MAKE THIS RECIEP AFTER WATCHING THE MOVIE. THEY PROMISSED TO EAT IT NO MATTER HOW IT TASTED THEIR NOT BIG ON EATTING VEGIES ESPECIALLY EGGPLANT SO I JUMPED ON IT. I WILL HAVE TO GET BACK TO YOU ON THE RESULTS. JULIETTE AND BOYS.


On February 07, 2010 at 10:06 AM, ssarryo (guest) said...
Subject: Wow!
This is easily converted into a vegan dish. Hmm.


On February 08, 2010 at 09:21 AM, G33ksquared (guest) said...
Subject: Thanks!
Just wanted to let you know thanks to you I had a very hearty meal if ratatouille!
I had to improvise a little as I recklessly assumed tomato paste and sauce were the same deal.


On February 15, 2010 at 06:14 AM, ews (guest) said...
Subject: garlic before onion
Julie the "good" chef wrote:
Quote:
But, why would anyone ever saute their minced garlic before their onions? Any good chef will tell you that your garlic will be apt to burn especially in an olive oil which boils hotter than some other oils (like vegetable, canola, and others).

This bothered me when I read it, but I didn't respond because the comment wasn't worth dignifying with a response. Any good chef would know how to saute their garlic before onions without burning the former. My mom often cooks this way--its gives the garlic time to release a deeper flavor, as my chef-instructors in cooking school taught me. And if there need be anymore proof, I give you an excerpt from the venerable James Beard's Beard on Food as he delivers his own Ratatouille recipe to his readers:

... very gently saute 5 finely chopped garlic cloves. Add 1 1/2 cups chopped onion, and let that melt down and blend with the garlic ...

While James Beard was a prolific author, entertainer, and promoter, he is not often held up as an authority on chemistry or terminology. The words "saute," "melt," and "gently" do not in any sense go together. The first poster is quite correct that if you saute garlic first and continue at that heat, it will burn. It should be clear that the author of the article was merely using the wrong word, and was actually sweating in oil.

Perhaps instead you could have found fault with the original poster's suggestion that olive oil "boils" hotter than canola--I assume that he meant flash point--as only the vilest grade of olive oil has a higher flash point than canola, and if we're sweating, we're not close to the flash point anyway. As any good cook would know.


On March 14, 2010 at 07:59 PM, Eyetalian Cheesehead (guest) said...
Subject: Wine with ratatouille
Regarding the question about inexpensive wines to go with this dish, I have a few suggestions, all of which retail for about $20 or less. First off, if you're looking to pair a wine with a cuisine form a certain area, it's never a bad move to choose a wine from the same region. Since this dish is Provencal, any number of rhone varietals (syrah, grenache, mourvedre or a blend thereof) would probably work well. IMHO, neither cabernet nor merlot would complement the flavors of this dish -- but to each their own. Juan Gil Jumilla (~$17/bottle) might be a good choice. French Rhone wines are a little too expensive for my pocketbook since the Euro started clobbering the dollar, but the Aussies do a pretty nice job with the shirazes -- just expect them to be a little more fruit-forward than their French counterparts. Layer Cake Shiraz '06 or '08 is a little on the heavy side, but would work well at less than $15/bottle; If you are not easily offended, there is a good grenache bottling called "B-tch" that might work well for ~$11/bottle (and it makes a great gag gift). A nice Cali Zin would also be a good fit -- Seghesio, Murhpy Goode, Murietta, Dry Creek, Eberle, Midnight Cellars are frequently good bets. Don't like reds, or it's warm out and you're eating cold food? How about a nice Tavel Rose (sorry, I don't know how to make the accent aigu appear here)? I've also had good roses made from sangiovese, syrah and malbec. Perhaps my favorite rose ever was Pipestone Grenache Rose, but I think the price was over $20. Their syrah was prestty solid, too.
For a white, I would suggest viognier -- Yalumba makes a good bottling for about $10/bottle. Their Eden Valley is even better.
Looks like I got a little carried away...


On March 14, 2010 at 10:24 PM, Big Jim (guest) said...
Subject: Rattatouille town hall
I'm impressed with the vigorous flood of comments and suggestions this recipe has invoked. I know the movie was very popular, but I think the great taste and healthiness of Rattatouille is the common vector here. My experience with Rattatouille is from Pelican's Wharf, a restaurant in Austin Tx, (sadly gone now) where my girfriend (now wife) and I would split an order with our main courses. It was a delight and I will attempt to cook it now, post haste. Thanks for the lively discussion! Viva Rattatouille!


On March 17, 2010 at 04:08 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I love this recipe. It's easy to make, and you can be pretty flexible with the ingredients. I've made it several times. Last night I made it and then found out a friend was coming over for dinner, and he's really picky about stuff he hasn't tried before. Even he enjoyed it, though.


On March 19, 2010 at 09:22 PM, cyndi (guest) said...
Subject: great dish for my diet!
I looked all over the web and my cookbooks for a simple ratatouille recipe that I could adapt while on a calorie-restricted diet. This was perfect! I reduced the oil down to a tsp but sprayed some olive-oil spray as necessary to keep from sticking. I used more fresh herbs - some oregano and thyme - and added a splash of balsamic vinegar at the end. Thanks so much and I really liked the format you used, too...and I'm no engineer!


On April 03, 2010 at 08:12 PM, renee (guest) said...
i was wondering if i would leave the skin on the eggplant.. i have never used eggplant before and have no idea about it.. thanks for any help :)


On April 03, 2010 at 08:59 PM, Dilbert said...
I would suggest peeling the eggplant. some folks do leave it on, but I find that makes for "stringy UFOs" in the final dish . . .


On April 03, 2010 at 09:55 PM, Carol (guest) said...
Subject: Cooking for Engineers website
I’d never run into your site,
Til one long and frustrating night
When, driving myself screwy
To find a good ratatouille,
Your site popped and I saw the light.

Then I noticed a whole other list
Of your dishes that I almost missed,
Now my repertoire’s grown
With your help alone –
And this cook is constantly kissed.


On April 04, 2010 at 07:32 PM, Michael Chu said...
Subject: Re: Cooking for Engineers website
Carol wrote:
I’d never run into your site,
Til one long and frustrating night...

That was an awesome poem/compliment! Thanks!


On June 02, 2010 at 02:35 AM, Anonymouse (guest) said...
Subject: This food is delicious
I've made it twice and each time it turned out great. It is one of the best pure vegetable dishes I've ever had. The thing about the eggplant, I've never had a problem with eggplant. Ever. I don't know where you are getting yours but every eggplant I've used has not been bitter. Maybe you need to find a better source or pick out a younger plant.

I pretty much followed this recipe exactly as is except I put the onions in first and then the garlic. This allows the garlic to have less cooking time in the oil and not be burned. I wonder what other variations this dish could have. Any thoughts?


On June 17, 2010 at 03:01 AM, lbcuadrado (guest) said...
Subject: Try adding chick peas
I loved, I mean loved this dish. My partner is a vegetarian and we were looking for some added protein, so we added chick peas and 1/4 c. more veg stock and 1/2 the liquid from the diced tomatoes... amazing. Go for it, you won't be sorry.


On July 28, 2010 at 04:31 PM, Robyn (guest) said...
Subject: YUM!
We cooked the ratatouille last weekend from this recipe and it was AMAZING! Even my veggie-phobic husband loved and and took leftovers to work! Thanks for the recipe!!


On August 12, 2010 at 02:13 AM, Frenchy (guest) said...
Subject: Can be done in a CROCKPOT !
Hi !

Just wanted to say, great recipe ! I had everything prepared, then something urgent came up. (ha, being a mom...) So I just dumped it all in my crockpot and left it on high for 4 hours; it turned out amazing !!!

It was just a bit too liquid, so next time I'll cut the broth in half (or add cornstarch like I did this time)

I served it over pasta with cheese melted on top. Great way to pass vegetables to picky eaters. Especially since the eggplant totally disappears, No-one knew that they were eating the weird purple thing everyone eeewwwed at and poked when it came from the market... LOL


On August 21, 2010 at 11:30 PM, ttmich (guest) said...
Subject: The presentation of the recipes
I am very impressed with the presentation of the recipes. The step-by-step instruction is very easy to follow accompanied by the excellent pictures. The chart is the master stroke: it summarizes each step, includes each ingredient and cooking times. Just follow the chart and you can easily cook the meal !


On September 07, 2010 at 09:57 PM, an anonymous reader said...
I add a splash of balsamic vinegar at the end before serving. It enlivens this dish and helps bring the flavors together even more.


On October 19, 2010 at 05:24 PM, an anonymous reader said...
added a hot pepper

Ka pow it was great


On December 09, 2010 at 07:29 PM, Argenta (guest) said...
Subject: sautee garlic before onions
...this method is actually not unusual...

it's the base for most dishes in the filipino culture, and if you do it right (low heat, etc) the dishes taste amazing. it's not exactly a secret...


On February 18, 2011 at 01:53 PM, aly (guest) said...
Subject: easy but great
i remember printing out this recipe a long time ago. i couldn't find it on google again, but i'm so happy i did. i love this version of ratatouille. i don't particularly like eggplant, so i leave that out. some of the other recipes call for potatoes and other peppers. i said to myself "that's not the recipe i used before! i want the one that i had!"


On March 21, 2011 at 06:03 PM, AussieMom (guest) said...
Subject: I have to rave!
Made this last night in lieu of a trip to Paris. My son was reading the book Ratatouile and all of a sudden asks if we can go to Paris. I asked him why and he said we have to go to Gustav's (or something - sorry, never saw the movie) since he makes the best ratatouille. So, we looked up airfares and found out that we couldn't afford to go to Paris, but instead, why don't we see what ratatouille is and if we can make it. I found this website, and am now a believer. Turns out, it is the easiest dish to make, but very flavorful. We ate ours with warm French bread.

Also, once everything is chopped up, my 8-year-old son was able to make it easily, with supervision of course :-> The only thing I would change is that I would put the eggplant as the first veggie and let that cook for awhile until it gets soft, then add the rest of the ingredients. That way, the other ingredients won't turn to mush as well...although, I did like it mushy like this, especially to dip the bread in, but it doesn't look as pretty as your picture.

By the way, I followed everything exactly as you have it listed and it really was yumbo! Thank you so much for this!


On March 21, 2011 at 06:27 PM, Dilbert said...
>>instead of going to Paris. . .

heehee. indeed an economical dish!


On April 23, 2011 at 06:06 PM, amberorange (guest) said...
Subject: rat
I made this and it was incredible. My husband, an avid MEAT and potato guy, loved this. Really he loved it. I tried it the next day cold on some toast and it was so so yummy. Thank you.


On June 25, 2011 at 02:42 PM, wannaB chef (guest) said...
Subject: recipe for ratatouille
I just seen another recipe for rat (as I am looking up recipes for it so I can cook it) and I noticed a variation. Although most all of the ingredients between your web page and the other was the same, the differance was they added Parmesian cheese and your doesn't. Any difference? Or is it still the same with just an extra added goodie?


On September 24, 2011 at 06:49 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Mushrooms and Ratatouille
Mushrooms are a great addition to ratatouille. I had a Francophile complain about the mushrooms until they ate the meal. Then they agreed that it was acceptable. Your recipe is five-star!


On August 27, 2013 at 11:35 PM, an anonymous reader said...
Subject: Eggplant sex
When cooking eggplant, the sex of the eggplant makes a difference in flavor and texture.

Female eggplants have more seeds and a more bitter flavor. Conversely, male eggplants have fewer seeds and are much less bitter. Female eggplants tend to need to be salted and have the exuded moisture removed, while male eggplants don't.

To tell the sex of an eggplant, look at the indentation at bottom. If it's deep and shaped like a dash, it's a female. If it's shallow and round, it's a male.


On November 18, 2013 at 03:20 PM, Kbo (guest) said...
Subject: Real Talk
This has been my go-to ratatouille recipe for years by now. That's awesome, you're awesome, that is all.

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