So this was a fun project my husband and i came up with. We decided that we would make Ratatouille and watch Ratatouille with the kids.
Brief summary: For any one who hasn’t seen the movie, Ratatouille is about a rat named Remy who learned to cook from watching a tv cooking show. He then gets separated from his family and ends up in Paris at the restaurant started by the man from the TV show. He helps the garbage boy, Linguini, cook.
In the movie Remy makes ratatouille for a restaurant critic, which then causes him to have a flash back to the ratatouille his mom made him as a boy.
We chose to make 2 recipes, one that looked like the one Remy made and one that looked like the one the critic remembered.
All of my ingredients, yes we did use that much vegetables.
Recipe 1 (Remy’s ratatouille)
2 Red Bellpepper (Capsicum) – seeds and ribs removed 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon minced Garlic
1⁄2 cup finely diced Yellow Onion
1 sprig Fresh Thyme
1 sprig Flat-leaf Parsley
1⁄2 a Bay Leaf
Salt to taste
1 Green Zucchini (100g or 4ounces) – thinly sliced
1 Yellow Zucchini (100g or 4ounces) – thinly sliced
1 Japanese Eggplant (100g or 4ounces) – thinly sliced 4 Tomatoes – thinly sliced
1⁄2 teaspoon Minced Garlic
2 teaspoon Olive Oil
1⁄8 teaspoon Fresh Thyme Leaves
Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper
1 tablespoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon Balsamic Vinegar
Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper.
1. For piperade, heat oven to 232C or 450F. Place pepper halves (cut side down) on a foil-lined tray. Roast until skin loosens, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest until cool enough to handle. Peel and chop finely.
2. Combine oil, garlic, and onion in medium skillet over low heat until very soft but not browned, about 8 minutes. Add tomatoes, their juices, thyme, parsley, and bay leaf. Simmer over low heat until very soft and very little liquid remains, about 10 minutes, do not brown; add peppers and simmer to soften them.
3. Heat oven to 135C (275F). Spread piperade in bottom of an 20cm (8-inch) baking dish or casserole dish.
4. From the side of dish, arrange a strip of alternating slices of vegetables over piperade, overlapping so that 1⁄4 inch of each slice is exposed. Around the center strip, overlap vegetables in a close spiral that lets slices mound slightly toward center. Repeat until dish is filled; all vegetables may not be needed.
5. Mix garlic, oil, and thyme leaves in bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle over vegetables. Cover pan with foil and crimp edges to seal well. Bake until vegetables are tender when tested with a paring knife, about 2 hours. Uncover and bake for 30 minutes more. (Lightly cover with foil if it starts to brown.) If there is excess liquid in pan, place over medium heat on stove until reduced. (At this point it may be cooled, covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days. Serve cold or reheat in 350-degree oven.
6. For vinaigrette, take a tablespoon of piperade from the baking dish, combine with oil, vinegar, herbs, and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl.
Recipe 2 (Critics memory)
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
3 cloves of garlic
Some herbes de provence
2 bay leafs
1 teaspoon of sugar
1. Your oven must be preheated at 180°C (350°F)
2. In 2 tablespoon of olive oil and on a low fire, let brown onions for 5 minutes. When it’s done, pour them in a dish who can go into oven.
3. Pour 1 tablespoon of olive oil, cut peppers in small cubes and let them brown 5 minutes, on a medium fire. Pour them into the oven dish, too.
4. Do the same for eggplants and courgettes. Add some olive oil (more for eggplants, because they “drink” it) and let brown for 5 minutes, on a medium fire. Then, in the oven dish.
5. Cut tomatoes in small cubes too and pour them into the dish, without cooking them.
6. Add herbs de Provence, salt, pepper, one teaspoon of white sugar, exploded garlic and bay leafs. Stir all this, put a lid on it. In the oven for 1 hour.
So personal notes, I liked Recipe 1 better because the vinaigrette added a nice tang, but my husband really dislikes balsamic vinegar so after one taste he wouldn’t finish it. we both agreed that Recipe 2 was really bland. All in all, great idea in theory, in practice, we don’t like ratatouille. But hey, the movie was good.