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Ratatouille (v)


The results of my experimenting. I quite like it with some torn basil leaves scattered over at the end, although that is not very authentic.


Serves 4 with bread


2 red peppers

2 medium onions

4 cloves of garlic, chopped finely

8 tomatoes

a few sprigs of thyme, leaves only

1 aubergine

1 courgette

1 yellow pepper

1 tsp smoked paprika

a hunk of chorizo (optional)

2 tbsp olive oil


Quarter the peppers, remove the stalk and seeds and grill, skin side up, under a hot grill until blackened. Leave to cool, then peel and dice.


Preheat the oven to 160°C.


Whilst the peppers are grilling, dice one onion and fry in a little olive oil until softened but not coloured. Dice the chorizo, if using, and add to the pan with half the garlic and the smoked paprika. Fry for another few minutes.


Roughly chop half the tomatoes and add to the pan along with their juice. Simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the diced peppers to the pan.


While the sauce is cooking, thinly slice the aubergine, courgette, yellow pepper and the remaining onion and tomatoes.


In a shallow, ovenproof dish, spread the sauce evenly over the bottom and arrange the sliced vegetables on top. Mix the remaining garlic with the remaining olive oil and thyme leaves and pour over the top. Season.


Cover the dish tightly with foil and bake for about 1.5 hours, until the vegetables are  meltingly tender. Turn the heat up to 200°C, remove the foil and bake for another 30 minutes or so until the top has lightly browned.


It can be eaten immediately, hot from the oven or left to cool and eaten cold. Serve with crusty white bread to mop up the juices.

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