Ratatouille

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RRRRRRRRatatouille! This is one of those dishes that says summer to me. It’s easy to make and delicious served hot or cold. I made a lot of ratatouille when I lived in the south of France. Everyone has there own way to make it, some more complicated than others, too often drenched in olive oil. This is my version – oil free and full of the flavor of fresh picked garden vegetables. Often it’s best to chop everything first before cooking but with this recipe I chop while I cook. The vegetables that need to cook longer get chopped first and start to cook, while I chop the vegetables that require less cooking time. By the time I am done chopping, I can tidy up a bit and then it’s done. Ratatouille is great on it’s own, served over rice or as a side or shown here, all dressed up, wrapped in light and delicate buckwheat crepes.
 

1 yellow onion
1 eggplant
2 medium zucchini
2 bell peppers, red, yellow or orange
2 large tomatoes or one 16-ounce can or jar of diced tomatoes
4 teaspoons Herbes de Provence or your own mix (basil, parsley, rosemary, thyme, oregano)

Chop the onion in to 1/2 inch pieces. Take a large stock pot and place on medium heat. Dry saute the onions in the pot, stirring occasionally to keep from burning. Once the onions start to cook, they will release their own moisture to cook in. Meanwhile mince 4 or 5 cloves of garlic and add to the pot. Continue to stir occasionally. Peel the eggplant if not organic and then cut into 1 inch pieces. Add to the pot and stir. Next, cut the zucchini in thin 1/4 inch circles and add to the pot. Take the bell peppers, remove the seeds, chop into 1/2 inch pieces and add to the pot, stirring to mix in with other vegetables. Chop the tomatoes or open the can of tomatoes and add to the pot along with the herbs. Stir everything together and cover. Cook over medium-low for another 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

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