What a better way than starting up my blog than with the recipe that inspired its name? So after digging up and searching all around this is my version of Ratatouille and the movie’s Confit Byaldi. Starting with the piperade and ending up with a rainbow of colour on a clay dish. Two hours and a half later the flavours to our mouths. Out of 5 stars: 10.
- 1 white onion finely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves finel chopped
- 3 bell peppers: 1 red, 1 green and 1 yellow
- 6 tomatoes: 3 skinned with no seeds and cut into squares (save the seed liquid!)
- 1 eggplant
- 2 zucchinis: 1 green and one yellow
- 1 bay leaf
- Fresh thyme
- Salt and black pepper
- Olive oil
- Balsamic vinegar
We first make the base of Ratatouille, which is the Piperade.
- Cut the bell peppers in half, deseed and take them to the oven ar 210ºC for about 20 minutes.
- Brown the onion with olive oil and after a few minutes add half the garlic to the skillet. Season.
- Leave cooking at low heat for about 7 minutes and add the tomatoes. Pass trough a sieve the tomato juice from the seeds and add to the preparation.
- Add the bay leaf, 4 thyme sprigs and 1 teaspoon of chopped parsley. Cook at low heat for 15 minutes.
- Remove the bay leaf and thyme and add the peeled and chopped bell peppers with a sprink of saffron. Taste the salt.
- Cook until all the liquid has evaporated.
- Save a few tablespoons of the piperade and spred it over the clay dish that will be used for the Ratatouille. You can use a normal pyrex or cast iron pan if you don’t have one of clay.
Piperade is good as it is, with fried eggs (Pisto con huevo typical spanish), into an omelette, soufflé, with meat, etc.
Now it’s time for the last part: the Ratatouille!
- With help from a mandolin or a very sharp knife cut very thin slices of the eggplant, zuchinis and tomatoes.
- Next, place them in the pan on top of the piperade, spiralling out from the center and making sure that 1/4 inch of each vegetable disc is exposed (see picture).
- Mix 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon thyme and 1 garlic clove finely chopped and with help of a brush paint the Ratatouille.
- Cove with aluminium foil and take to the oven for 2 1/2 hours at 240ºC.
- Remove the foil and leave 30 more minutes (watch to avoid burning).
- To serve: with help of a spatula and good knife take some and try to follow the spiral when placed on the plate.
- Serve with a vinaigrette made with olive oil, the piperade saved before, balsamic vinegar, garlic and thyme. Garnish with thyme spigs.