Ratatouille is one of my favorite dishes to make. I love the flavors of the spices and herbs, but it’s such a hassle to make because you have to do all sorts of salting and what-nots to remove extra liquids. This recipe from America’s Test Kitchen is great and easy. No more salting and extra steps.
(see ATK’s recipe here)
The difference in this recipe is that instead of salting, you just bake the eggplant and onions uncovered. This is very important because it helps evaporate the moisture. Of course you add in the other ingredients afterwards but it really did help. Also grilling onions before putting it into the oven also helps.
I messed up on the recipe a little bit because 1. I didn’t put in enough eggplant or tomatoes and 2. I added too much spicy pepper flakes. But otherwise I thought it turned out really great! It’s a lot better than my original ratatouille recipe. This recipe was still very watery and took way too long.
I added in some wine (about 1/2 cup dry white wine) at the end before putting in the zucchini and bell peppers. I also used green bell peppers instead of colored because they are much cheaper in my area. A yellow squash added that extra color you would get from the colored bell peppers anyway.
If you don’t know what herbes de provence is, it’s a very expensive herb mix (not really worth it’s price in my opinion) that should have strong notes of lavender in it. It’s actually quite good but I definitely think it’s better to make it yourself as it is much cheaper. Try and find a recipe that uses dried lavender and tarragon as these are the key flavors you want in your ratatouille.
If you can, save this recipe for a colder day. Don’t be like me and decide to make it on one of the hottest days out of the year. I was sweating bullets as I waited for the oven to suck the moisture out of both me and my ratatouille.
Funny story, but it was actually this dish that inspired me to start cooking at a very young age after watching the movie Ratatouille by Disney. I thought the dish looked so neat delicious that I have actually made this recipe over 10 times (which is a lot for me considering I do not follow nor repeat recipes very often).
I know this was a lot of talk, but I hope this was both helpful and insightful for you. Enjoy making you ratatouille!
Things I added:
- 3 zucchini roughly chopped (instead of 2)
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- Less oil (only a tablespoon)
- 2 green bell peppers roughly chopped
- This step goes after the eggplant have been in the oven but before putting in the zucchini and bell peppers, Add in 1/2 cup of white wine. It adds a nice acidic complexity to the dish .