Ratatouille

Traditionally a French peasant dish, ratatouille is the perfect summer evening meal. Impress your family and friends with the depth of flavour to this hearty feast!

Ingredients

For the sauce

  • 400g tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Seasoning, to taste

For the ratatouille

  • 3 aubergines
  • 2 large courgettes
  • 2 salad tomatoes
  • 2 small onions
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • Pinch dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Seasoning, to taste

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 180℃/160℃ fan/gas mark 4.
  2. First, make the tomato sauce. In your Cooks Professional cast iron casserole dish, heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add the diced onion and crushed garlic, and add the tinned tomatoes and diced bell pepper. Fry for roughly 5 minutes before adding the balsamic vinegar, sugar, thyme, and oregano. Stir well to combine, and cook for a further 15 minutes, remembering to stir occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Use your Cooks Professional ladle to transfer the tomato sauce to your Cooks Professional food processor. Keep the cast iron casserole dish to one side. Blitz until the tomato sauce is creamy, but still a bit chunky. Add a bit of boiling water if necessary to keep the consistency right.
  4. Next, prepare the veg for the ratatouille. Slice the courgettes, aubergines, onions, and tomatoes into even, thin slices.
  5. Spread the prepared tomato sauce evenly on the bottom of your Cooks Professional cast iron casserole dish. On top of the sauce, arrange the slices of vegetables. Alternate between the courgette, aubergine, onion, and tomato until the whole pan is covered. Season with salt and pepper, and a sprinkle of dried oregano and the thyme sprigs. Drizzle a little olive oil over the ratatouille before placing it in the pre-heated oven for cooking.
  6. Cook for 30 minutes; check after 20 minutes to see if the vegetables are tender, and the sauce is gently bubbling around the sides. Once cooked, remove the casserole dish from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Serve with a side of crusty bread, or serve as a side dish alongside our cajun chicken burgers.

Lead image: zefirchik06 via Getty Images.

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