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I must not give the impression that all the cooking is done in our house just by me. From time to time the Blonde breaks into my space and the results are wonderful – as in this blissful Ratatouille. A fabulous vegetable dish to serve with lamb, beef, pork whether from the kitchen or BBQ – and a cinch to present at the table. The secret is to chop everything apart from the garlic into bite sized pieces, cook al dente, leave to one side to cool then heat again at the last minute before serving.

Materials

  • Olive oil.
  • 6 cloves garlic chopped finely.
  • 2 yellow onions chopped.
  • 2 egg plant, peeled and chopped.
  • 4 zucchini sliced ½ inch thick.
  • 3 red and yellow bell peppers chopped.
  • I handful of pitted olives.
  • 1 28oz tin chopped tomatoes.
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil.
  • Salt and black pepper.
  • Peel of an Orange.
  • Sprinkle of Balsamic Vinegar.
  • 2 handfuls of chopped fresh Basil.

Method.

  1. Chop all the vegetables into bite sized pieces, finely chop the garlic.
  2. Saute  ingredient by separate ingredient in the olive oil, browning slightly but keeping them al dente.
  3. Add each ingredient to a large Le Creuset casserole pan, sprinkling lightly with salt and pepper as you go.
  4. Finish by gently stirring in the tomatoes, orange peel, olives, a pinch of chilli flakes  and dried basil.
  5. Heat to a soft simmer, taste for seasoning, and add a sprinkling of balsamic vinegar – then allow to cool.
  6. 15 minutes before serving reheat, adjust to taste and stir in a big handful of freshly chopped basil.

Sensational.

All the best Tim, James