As I’ve said before I’ve recently gone through a fairly major surgery. This means I wasn’t able to have the energy to cook something for you this week- but don’t worry, all signs point to things going quite well for me! I owe this recipe to my friend Dion Turner and his lovely wife Jia, as they stepped up to the plate to provide me with a write up and photos for you. Without further ado, here is the recipe they have provided :
Smoky Ratatouille (serves a small army)
– 1 Eggplant
– ½ Yellow Onion
– 2 Medium Zuchinni
– 3 “Super Sweet” Mini (Bell) Peppers
– 1 Package of Grape Tomatoes (~220g)
– 1 Large Can Crushed Tomatoes (~800ml)
– 6 Strips Bacon
– 1 Bag of Gluten-free Pasta (~350g)
– Salt & Pepper
– Basil, Oregano, Garlic Powder, Rosemary
– Vegetable Oil (Canola)
• 2 medium zucchini -OR- 1 large zucchini.
• 3 mini bell peppers -OR- 1 large bell pepper.
• feel free to add more peppers or even hot peppers.
• vegetable oil -OR- extra virgin olive oil.
• exempt bacon for a vegetarian option.
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
2.Cut the top and bottom off of the eggplant.Thinly slice off the skin (as the skin can be bitter). Dice the meat of the eggplant into 1cm cubes. (note from Sean: If you sprinkle the eggplant cubes with salt and allow it to pull out the liquid from the eggplant, it will cut the bitter!)
4. Fine-dice the peppers (remove seeds).
5.Fine-dice the yellow onion.
6.Gently toss the diced vegetables in a medium mixing bowl with a ¼ cup oil. Place mixed vegetables evenly on a baking sheet andevenly season with equal parts, salt, pepper, Basil, Oregano, Garlic powder and Rosemary (about a tablespoon of each or to-taste).
7.In a medium casserole dish gently bathe the grape tomatoes in a 1/8 cup of oil. Sprinkle on 1 teaspoon of salt. (keep the mixed vegetables and tomatoes separate because the tomatoes will burst while baking.)
8.Place both the baking sheet and casserole dish in the oven for 30-45 minutes depending on your oven.
9.In the meantime: Fry up the bacon and set aside on a paper towel to wick away excess grease. Boil your gluten-free pasta as perthe package directions with 2 tablespoons oil and 1 teaspoon salt (try to time it so the pasta has just been drained and is hot at the end of the baking period.) When the bacon is cool enough to handle, dice and set aside.
10.Place your baked mixed vegetables, baked grape tomatoes, bacon and your can of crushed tomatoes into a large (heat safe) mixing bowl. Gently mix to combine.
11.Serve over gluten-free pasta (top with any variety of gluten-free cheeses for added kick – From Sean: Cheese isn’t really limited very often. However, it is best to stay away from pre shredded cheeses as they can have starch coatings. Use a deli you trust to have clean tools while they cut the cheese for you).
And there we have it! Even though this technically isn’t a ratatouille, it is still delicious. Not every day that you get an oven roasted pasta sauce either! I’m looking forward to tweaking the recipe and making a version of my own. This reminds me- perhaps I should do a classical Ratatouille one of these days as another recipe on my blog. For now, I’m going to go back to resting while I enjoy some delicious pasta.
Hope this week finds all of you well, I’m looking forward to getting back to my cooking and blogs once I have the energy to be up and moving about.
Sean ( With a little help from my friends)